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Government & Politics

Massillon City Council Votes Tonight on Plan to Reopen Shuttered Affinity Medical Center

photo of Affinity Medical Center
TIM RUDELL
/
WKSU
Massillon Regional Medical Center would be the new name for Affinity Medical Center if the plan is approved; the facility closed in February, and Mayor Kathy Catazaro-Perry says reopening the facility is very important to Massillon.

Massillon City Council is slated to vote tonight on a plan to have a Tennessee-based startup reopen Affinity Medical Center.

Massillon officials have been searching for a partner to re-open the facility, and last week recommended a deal with Paramount Matrix Healthcare. Company representative Matthew Brock told city council last week he wants to take over Affinity in part because of community support for the hospital. But little is known about Brock – who is in his 20s -- or his company. J.B. Silvers, a professor of Health Finance at Case Western Reserve University, says he’s less concerned about age than he is curious about the company itself.

“You don’t know what their financial backing is. And until they disclose that – if there’s a disruption, if they have major capital expenditures they have to make – do they have the wherewithal to be able to do that? Or is that what closes them down?”

Silvers says the plan by Paramount Matrix to give hiring preference to former staff members is a good one, since doctors are what will drive demand at the hospital. He adds that one of the keys to the hospital’s success lies in demographics.

“Probably in that area, there’s quite a large number of retired people on Medicare. Medicare is really important for community hospitals.  So they need to keep that relationship intact. If there’s a disruption in that, that’s a serious issue to keep that going. But I imagine they’ve thought that through.”

As part of the deal, Paramount Matrix would lease the facility for $50,000 a month, with an option to buy it for $20 million in five years. The hospital would be renamed Massillon Regional Medical Center.