Due to the high level of consolidation in the healthcare industry, the amount of hospital closures has increased. Although some hospitals have closed due to bankruptcy and financial issues, some hospitals close because the healthcare services are transferred to another facility. A health system may consolidate services to increase efficiency and reduce unnecessary healthcare costs. Regardless of the reason, the closing of a hospital — often a long-standing symbol in a community — can be hard for employees, physicians and community members to accept. They may pushback on the deal. According to Doug Fenstermaker, managing director and vice president of healthcare for Warbird Consulting Partners and former CFO of HealthEast Care System in St. Paul, Minn., when an executive team closes a hospital, they need to prepare employees and even community members for a “grieving” process: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

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