Montefiore Medical Center and an unnamed private real estate investment group are competing today to acquire New York Westchester Square Medical Center in the Bronx and will shape the struggling hospital’s future, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Westchester Square, which filed for bankruptcy in 2006, is located at 2475 St. Raymond Avenue in the Westchester Village neighborhood. Montefiore — which has amassed a network of over 100 medical clinics primarily in the Bronx — has said it intends to convert the hospital into an ambulatory surgery and primary-care facility with an emergency room, a move that has sparked outcry over a loss of essential services. “Our hospital is a smaller hospital and something that the community has depended on and come to rely on,” Dr. Louis Rose, chairman of the hospital board, told the Journal.
But a group of real estate investors has made an eleventh hour-offer of $14.4 million, after the hospital’s board pushed for alternative bids. The group said it would lease the building back to the hospital, which could continue to operate as usual with the same board of directors.
“We believe that the hospital, despite recent history, can and will be a viable and important health-care institution,” Michael Fragin, a spokesman for the investors, told the Journal. [WSJ] – Hiten Samtani