The Hospital Systems Health System, based in Springfield, announced Monday, January 22, that two of its hospitals in Wisconsin will close permanently within the next few months. The two that will close are HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital in Eau Claire and HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Chippewa Falls.
In the same announcement, HSHS said that Prevea Health, a physician network offering primary and specialty care, will also close all of its locations across Western Wisconsin’s Chippewa Valley. “The majority of the closures are expected to be complete on or before April 21, 2024, with the exception of the Prevea residency clinics that will close on or before June 30, 2024,” said the announcement posted on the HSHS website Monday.
HSHS framed these closings as “part of a complete exit from the Western Wisconsin region.”
HSHS and Prevea locations outside of Western Wisconsin’s Chippewa Valley region are unaffected by these changes, the announcement said.
“While HSHS and Prevea intended to create an integrated health delivery model in Western Wisconsin in 2015, our operations in the region have struggled for the past several years due to a mismatch in the supply of and demand for local health care services,” said Damond Boatwright, President and CEO of HSHS. “We closely considered all other options and sought strategic alternatives. After an agreement with a suitable partner did not work out, it was determined that exiting the market is the only feasible path forward.”
The closures impact approximately 1,082 HSHS and 325 Prevea employees and physicians, all of whom will receive support services and career transition assistance, including the potential to seek positions elsewhere in the organizations, if available.
“We made this decision with a heavy heart as HSHS Sacred Heart and HSHS St. Joseph’s have been treasured ministries of the Hospital Sisters for more than 140 years,” said Boatwright.
HSHS currently has 15 hospitals and scores of community-based health centers, clinics and physicians’ offices in Illinois and Wisconsin. In central Illinois, HSHS runs hospitals in Springfield (St. John’s), Decatur (St. Mary’s) and Litchfield (St. Francis), along with many physicians’ groups offices and clinics.