State agencies are allowing more public comment, until October 7, on the proposed sale of Woonsocket’s Landmark Medical Center to a for-profit chain as the deadline for a decision on the deal approaches.
Though previous deals have fallen through, Woonsocket officials are still hopeful about a yes vote.
Woonsocket economic development director Matthew Wocjik says Landmark is his city’s most important economic force. He says that if another round of public comments in favor of selling the ailing hospital fails to persuade state regulators to approve the deal, Landmark could be forced to close its doors. And, he says, there’s no plan B.
“What would we do with a shuttered hospital? I have no idea," said Wocjik. "I’ve never really contemplated such an awful outcome.”
Wocjik says the hospital could help attract more businesses and growth to his flagging community. And there’s been talk of its potential as a teaching hospital. But he says those dreams will remain out of reach unless a buyer can bail the hospital out. Landmark has been in receivership for more than five years and surviving, in part, on loans from potential suitors.