CALN TWP., Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Brandywine Hospital in Chester County closed its doors at midnight.
First responders and residents drove by the hospital in Caln Township over the weekend to say thank you to the workers.
Brandywine Hospital is the second of two facilities owned by Tower Health to close because of an agreement to sell them fell through.
Jennersville Hospital in West Grove closed last month.
A buyer was set to acquire both hospitals, but Tower Health said the company did not meet its regulatory and financial obligations to complete the transaction.
A preliminary hearing is set for this week in Chester County to dispute the halt of the sale.
According to a spokesperson for the Chester County Medical Society, "The Chester County Medical Society, with the support of other medical societies, have entered a petition to intervene and support the effort of Canyon Atlantic to keep Brandywine Hospital open and to stop further sale of Jennersville Hospital assets including the eventual reopening of Jennersville Hospital."
Currently, Tower Health has made the decision to close both hospitals.
The spokesperson added, "Canyon Atlantic has brought actions for injunctive relief and specific performance against Tower Health et al, the result of which, if successful, would allow Canyon Atlantic to keep the hospitals in operation. Chester County Medical Society will petition the Court to allow it to intervene and support Canyon's litigation."
Because of the closures, people who used these hospitals will need to drive farther for emergency services.
"What are the people of this area going to do if there is an emergency to get to Chester County Hospital? It's about 25 minutes if you go during rush hour, the traffic is unbelievable," said Downingtown resident Janet Milford Schneider.
A nurse practitioner at Brandywine is praying for a lifeline.
"So many people lost their job, and are having a hard time, because it's not easy to find a job at this time, those people who are not nurses. We need help from the government and the community," she said.
More than 7,600 people have signed a Change.org petition hoping community engagement will resuscitate the collapsed sale.
Tower Health says it "will work with patients to transition care, and with employees and providers on placement into other positions."
Tower Health released this statement on the closure:
"For sixteen months, Tower Health pursued every viable option to secure the future of Brandywine and Jennersville Hospitals, including extensive exploration of potential new owners. When we announced a definitive agreement for Canyon Atlantic Partners to acquire both hospitals, we believed we had finally found a solution that would preserve Brandywine and Jennersville as acute care hospitals. Unfortunately, despite our understanding at the time the agreement was signed - and after multiple requests and extensions over the last three weeks - Canyon Atlantic Partners has ultimately not demonstrated the necessary regulatory and operational preparedness, nor validated its financial ability, to complete this transaction and operate these hospitals. As a result, both hospitals will close: Jennersville Hospital effective 11:59 PM on December 31, 2021; and Brandywine Hospital effective 11:59 PM on January 31, 2022.
We are deeply saddened by this turn of events, however, no viable options remain for the continued operation of these facilities. Our responsibility to our patients, as well as employees and the communities served, is to ensure this transition included an effective and safe path for change. In the end, we are highly disappointed that Canyon Atlantic Partners has not been able to satisfy these essential requirements. Tower Health will work with patients to transition care, and with employees and providers on placement into other positions."
In regard to the legal fight, Tower Health released this statement:
"We do not comment on pending litigation. The closure of Jennersville Hospital was completed on December 31, 2021. Brandywine Hospital is scheduled to close at 11:59 pm on January 31, 2022. The closure process is proceeding smoothly in accordance with regulations and with utmost concern for the safety of patients and support of staff."