SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Berkshire Medical Center is one step closer in purchasing North Adams Regional Hospital, and in the meantime, officials say they're trying to open the emergency room by May 19.
Officials discussed the process of re-opening the North Adams Regional Hospital on Thursday during a bankruptcy hearing at the US District Court in Springfield.
A delegation of nurses from North Adams was outside the courthouse before the hearing to let their voices be heard. They are calling for an immediate full restoration of the hospital.
Berkshire Medical Center has offered to buy the hospital after the company filed for bankruptcy. But before a deal is reached, officials must discuss the next steps for the hospital.
Harry Murphy, a trustee of Northern Berkshire, said the next step is to file a motion to allow Berkshire Medical Center to reopen the emergency room. This means the emergency room would have to be ready for inspection and have required paperwork filed by May 19.
If the motion is granted, Berkshire Medical Center will be allowed to operate the ER while the sale of the entire hospital is underway.
The hospital closure left more than 500 workers without a job and an entire community of residents without health care services.
"Even though we are no longer a hospitals no we are no longer employed we are hoping that employment will come back to our area. There's nothing about jobs at this point. But hopefully the services will come back and if the services comes back people will go back to work and they'll start getting their healthcare," said Karin Robert, nurse.
If all goes according to plan, officials say Berkshire Medical Center can take full ownership and open the hospital in July.