Tenet Healthcare is shutting down its last four MedPost urgent care centers in Metro Detroit and plans to sell three of them to another urgent care operator, First Choice Urgent Care.
Tenet officials chalked the closures up to challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic, and said they intend to sell the centers in Bloomfield, Livonia and Southfield. The fourth, in Rochester Hills, will become a physician’s office or other healthcare facility, according to The Detroit News
"We are committed to providing our full support and assistance to employees through the close, and facilitating opportunities for open roles at local Tenet facilities," said Tenet officials.
Tenet previously started the year off with nine MedPost centers but closed five of them in April following the downturn from the pandemic. The closures now coincide with several hundred layoffs at Detroit Medical Center, another Tenet owned property, which is expected to lay off more employees by the end of the year.
Many healthcare systems in Michigan experienced huge cuts in staff early on during the pandemic. In addition, many healthcare workers contracted the virus, forcing them to stay home. More than 2,200 healthcare workers at Beaumont Health and Henry Ford Health System came down with COVID-19
back in March and April and were forced to take leave from work so as not to infect others.
Despite these staffing issues, the DMC initially thought layoffs would not be an issue and contracted with staffing agencies and recruited nurses from colleges to take on extra hands to help manage the increasing number of patients it was seeing, according to The Detroit News. The decrease over the last few months in the need for staff, however, has changed this.
“Like many health systems locally and nationally, we continually evaluate and review our staffing needs, which have decreased due to reduced patient demand during the pandemic,” DMC officials said in a statement sent to the Detroit News. “Our goal is to ensure we are strongly positioned to provide the highest quality and safest care to our patients while making the best use of our resources.”
Tenet expects employees at the three MedPost centers to be offered positions upon the completion of the sale, which it anticipates will be finished in December.