Roseland Hospital CEO Dian Powell resigned weeks ago, Tuesday last day at work

June 4, 2013 (CHICAGO)

Sources tell ABC7 Powell was escorted from the building, but a spokesperson says that is not true.

We're also told hospital board members are still working with the Governor's office on Roseland's big debt problem and a deal to keep it open.

But if that doesn't happen by Wednesday, officials say they'll begin transferring their 38 patients to other hospitals.

Group rallies at gov's office for Roseland Hospital on Tuesday

Area residents hoping to save Roseland Hospital from closing want Governor Pat Quinn to release funding to keep it open.

A group rallied outside of the governor's office at the Thompson Center Tuesday. They're demanding the release of emergency funds so the hospital can stay in business.

The facility is millions of dollars in debt and will stop taking in patients Wednesday.

The governor's office released a statement saying "the state of Illinois remains committed to working with the hospital" and discussions are ongoing.

"It seems like they are picking on the lower income people and that's not right, they need to do something to keep this hospital open," said William Gibson.

Roseland is the only hospital in the area for seven miles. Trauma patients are often stabilized there, and community members say closing the hospital will put many people living in the area at risk.

However, the governor's office clarified the hospital is not state-run. A press secretary for Gov. Quinn says that the hospital and its board of directors have "serious management issues that need to be addressed." The State of Illinois has advanced all payments to the hospital for the fiscal year, but the organization is still "in deep debt and has mismanaged resources," says the governor's office.

Community members say they want the governor to hold a public hearing to address the hospital's future and the needs of the Far South Side area.

But the governor's office says the state's top healthcare advisors have met with Roseland Hospital officials repeatedly over the past six weeks, most recently Sunday. Hospital officials have failed to respond to requests for a viable plan to properly run the facility, the governor's office said.

Still, community members expressed disappointment.

"We need this hospital. If they can do anything to help this hospital please do because the distance we'd have to go for another hospital would be bad, a lot of elderly people came here," said Jesse Moore, area resident.

The hospital has laid off more than 13 percent of its staff already and has $7 million in unpaid bills. Hospital officials say it has not been able to make money because it serves so many uninsured patients. Over the years, as other hospitals have closed, Roseland has seen a 40-percent increase in patients, many without insurance.

"Of every dollar we bill, we only receive 17 cents from that," said hosptial CEO Diane Powell.

Annete Cannon is among the uninsured who is served by the hospital.

"It's the only way I could get here, call the ambulance... A car isn't fast enough. I'll be gone by the time an ambulance gets here," said Cannon.

Supporters of the hospital say if the hospital closes, it will cause a major economic impact on the area. Businesses that rely on Roseland Hospital will close, they say, and jobs will be lost, in addition to the 600 Roseland Hospital employees who would be affected by the closing.

"A lot of violent stuff goes on. They need medical attention... a lot of deaths. Where else are they going to go?" said Gibson.

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