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E.J. Noble plans to close two health clinics

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E.J. Noble Hospital has asked the state Health Department for permission to close its satellite health clinics in Harrisville and Russell.

There are no definitive plans to close any of the hospital’s other clinics, said Rebecca J. Faber, spokeswoman for Canton-Potsdam Hospital, which is managing the Gouverneur hospital.

E.J. Noble has struggled to get back on its feet since the Health Department shut down its laboratory for deficiencies Sept. 28. The lab was allowed to partially reopen later under the supervision of Samaritan Medical Center, but the hospital remains in difficult financial circumstances. A new board, in conjunction with CPH, is reviewing all of E.J. Noble’s operations.

The Russell clinic has been closed since the winter when its nurse practitioner took another job. It is uncertain when the Harrisville clinic might close, but possibly this fall.

“We’re doing that because of low volumes,” Ms. Faber said.

Some patients of the Harrisville clinic received letters that the clinic would close in August, but those went out too soon, Ms. Faber said. The state Health Department requires a 90-day notice after it has given its permission for closure and that has not happened yet, she said.

The closing of the Harrisville site will not leave the village without health care. Lewis County General Hospital reopened a clinic there in February at 14214 Church St. It is staffed by physician assistant Brittani L. Bickel, a licensed professional nurse and a physician office assistant. The clinic is open Monday, Thursday and Friday.

“The population will be well-served,” Ms. Faber said. “It seems like the right time to close out.”

A member of the nursing staff at Harrisville was given notice, and the practitioner will work in other locations, Ms. Faber said. Patients of the closing clinics also can go to E.J. Noble clinics in Edwards, DeKalb and Antwerp.

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