By Casey Nolen
East St. Louis, IL (KSDK) - East St. Louis no longer has a hospital - Kenneth Hall Regional Hospital closes its doors at 7 a.m. Tuesday.
The hospital has a history in East St. Louis that goes back more than 100 years but come Tuesday morning that history will come to a close and would be patients will have to find other options for emergency care.
Kenneth Hall is a nonprofit hospital run by the Southern Illinois Healthcare Foundation. The foundation says since 2000, the hospital host has lost $5 million a year, every year.
The hospital was already down to an emergency room and 39 mental health beds. Those services will now be moved to Touchette Regional Hospital in nearby Centreville, which is operated by the same organization. And while that's not far it's not good for East St Louis say city leaders - a sentiment shared by one of the last people to visit the hospital Monday night in need of a doctor.
"There's going to be a lot of people getting hurt around here and Centerville is too far to be trying to rush somebody to the hospital if they get shot or killed or whatever," said Farina Larkin. "I don't think that's a good idea for them to be closing down this hospital. And our police need it too in case one of them gets shot."
East St. Louis Mayor Alvin Parks has said publicly in the past he is concerned about train tracks that run between East St. Louis and Centerville that could slow down response times to and from the nearest hospital. Parks also says he is working to bring more health services to East St. Louis.