Westlake Hospital closing approved by unanimous state review board vote

BOLINGBROOK, Ill. — A suburban hospital's closing was approved by a unanimous vote by the state review board.

The Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board voted 7 to 0 in favor of Westlake Hospital's closure on Tuesday.

The review board considered a proposal by California-based owner Pipeline Health to shut down Westlake Hospital in Melrose Park.

State regulators heard testimony from those in the the fight to save the hospital. Hospital supporters said Westlake was important to the area's low-income residents. Dozens of witnesses testified that the plan to close the hospital was already causing harm.

Pipeline's Nicholas Orzano testified that Westlake was 70% empty on a daily basis.

While the closure application has been approved, it's not a done deal. A lawsuit opposing the closure is making its way through circuit court.

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