Norman Specialty Hospital To Close

Thursday, July 14th 2016, 1:38 pm

Norman Specialty Hospital is a 50-BED long-term, acute care hospital where most patients stay for, on average, about a month. This week employees say they were told the place is closing down Friday. 

They don't know whether they'll be paid. They don't know what will become of their patients. And nobody from the hospital will answer questions about it.

Employees say the announcement came out of nowhere. 

"I mean, none of us really knew it was going to happen,” said Asheton Arebalo, a Certified Nursing Assistant at Norman Specialty Hospital.

“They had just hired a couple of new CNA's to help on the floor and then Monday or Tuesday, they come in for orientation and we have to tell them, well, we're closing so just keep the job hunt going."

The hospital directed all questions to their public relations firm in Ohio. The PR firm won't comment, other than to say the hospital will try to make this a smooth transition for patients. Employees doubt it. 

One longtime nurse, who asked us to shield her identity because she is afraid the hospital will withhold her pay if she talks, says she's worried about her patients. 

"Our patients are family,” she said. “Most of them are there for months. And some of them don't have family. We are their family. We hold their hands as they draw their last breath, some of them."

Employees tell News 9 they were told all 167-jobs will be cut. 

"Where are we all going to go? Where are our patients going to go? Most of us have been there for years. This is family. We spend more time with the people that we work with than at home," the Nurse told New s9. "I'm mad. I'm angry. You didn't tell us about this… It's like you socked us in the gut."