LAKEWOOD, OH (WOIO) - A local group is working to keep Lakewood Hospital alive amid plans to turn the facility into a $34 million dollar healthcare center.
"They are acting like they own it. Telling us what to do," says Tom Monahan with the group "Save Lakewood Hospital."
Members gathered Monday night for a meeting at City Hall to talk about the controversial issue.
"We want the hospital to say open and it's going to have to be reduced in size and we want to get somebody in here other than the Clinic and run the hospital as a community hospital," says Monahan.
The Cleveland Clinic wants to build a multi-million dollar health care center that includes emergency services. Right now, it is leasing the building through 2026.
Lakewood Mayor Michael Summers and the Lakewood Hospital Association fear that in a few years there could be an emergency situation: not having enough money to keep up the building because of the decrease in the number of patients.
More than 90 percent use the hospital for outpatient services.
"The current system is not financially sustainable and its increasingly detached from what are needs are. The fact of the matter is significant and powerful trends are driving folks away from lying in bed," said Lakewood Mayor Michael Summers.
A final decision on the plan is expected at the end of May. The community group says if it goes through they will ask voters to put the issue on the ballot.