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QUEENS (WABC) — Two hospitals in Queens stop accepting patients on Sunday and soon they'll close their doors for good.
St. John's Queens and Mary Immaculate hospitals are shutting down because their operator recently filed for bankruptcy.
It was dead silent inside St. John's Queens Hospital on Saturday night. No beeping machines, no ringing phones. Just the sound of the end.
“Very eerie. Very eerie. It's so quiet. I'm used to hearing the hustle and bustle of life here,” Catherine Wilkinson, registered nurse, said.
The skeleton staff of a handful of nurses, doctors and security guards counted down the hours of the final Saturday night.
At the stroke of midnight, they would lock their doors in Elmhurst and at their sister facility, Mary Immaculate Hospital in Jamaica.
Nearly three thousand people have lost their jobs.
Wilkinson says she lost more than a paycheck.
“I've been here for almost 40 years. My staff is like my family. Obviously, I'm very upset,” she said.
The state gave 55-million dollars in loans to help the parent corporation of the two hospitals stay afloat, but it wasn't enough.
The company filed for bankruptcy in early February.
Hospital staff says it hit them 10 days ago when department after department shut down and the ambulances stopped coming.
“A patient called crying on the phone learning that the hospital was closing tonight. I didn't know what to tell her,” emergency physician Onjemachi Ajah said.
For many, that's just it. They're at a loss for words. The same silence that runs through the halls.
Below is a story from Fox 5 news: