BOOTHBAY HARBOR, Maine (AP) - A plan to close the emergency room at St. Andrews Hospital in Boothbay Harbor has been approved.
The plan was approved Thursday by the board of trustees of the small hospital's parent company.
James Donovan, president and CEO of Lincoln County Healthcare, says the hospital isn't treating enough patients to warrant keeping the ER open. The hospital averages about 11 patients a day in the emergency room.
The emergency room will be replaced by a daytime urgent care center. The change takes effect in April and will cost 50 jobs.
Area residents who need emergency care are expected to go about 20 miles away to Miles Memorial Hospital in Damariscotta.
A spokesman for the Maine Hospital Association says the issues at St. Andrews affect other rural hospitals in the state.
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)