Mercy Hospital sold for $1

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ICR Iowa

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The Mercy Hospital, most known for being the oldest hospital in Chicago and a shooting in 2018, was sold in 2021 for a single dollar. The hospital was being closed for losing $4 million to $7 million a month, when it needed $100 million worth of upgrades and renovations. It filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy, which by definition of U.S. courts is when, “the Bankruptcy Code (chapter 11) generally provides for reorganization, usually involving a corporation or partnership. A chapter 11 debtor usually proposes a plan of reorganization to keep its business alive and pay creditors over time. People in business or individuals can also seek relief in chapter 11.”
Hospitals are expensive to build with millions of dollars worth of machinery and the cost to actually build the building. It usually costs between $60-187 million, so when there’s a hospital that is being sold for a single dollar, it’s bound to raise a few questions: Is the hospital still being used? Why was it losing so much money? How will it affect the city during a pandemic? And how can an entire hospital be sold for only a dollar?
So yes, the owners only technically paid one dollar, however they are also paying off the debt, and investing in renovations. The best comparison I can think of is like buying a bag of chips for a dollar, but then you also have to pay millions of dollars in taxes. The hospital is open, but under new owners, so it won’t have a major impact on Covid, and selling buildings for a dollar isn’t as uncommon as it may seem. Detroit, Michigan has been doing this for a decent amount of time. The city sells some houses for a single dollar but taxes the houses around $60,000, and the buildings are basically unlivable and unstable, wanting the buyers to renovate it themselves after not being used for decades because of the city’s dwindling population from 1.8 million people in the 1950s to 670 thousand people in 2020. Italy is also doing this, but the homes are beautiful, yet not modern and doesnt look like the aftermath of a nuclear bomb going off. Would you want to buy a house with a single dollar?
2022 cost to build a hospital: Hospital construction cost. Fixr.com. (2022, January 24). Retrieved February 3, 2022, from https://www.fixr.com/costs/build-hospital
Associated Press. (2021, April 3). Sale of south side Chicago hospital to nonprofit finalized. AP NEWS. Retrieved February 3, 2022, from https://apnews.com/article/chicago-illinois-bc42141d48f5000fe6a0b994062c57a8
Bloomberg. (n.d.). Bloomberg.com. Retrieved February 3, 2022, from https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2021-10-01/mercy-hospital-gets-second-chance-to-provide-health-care-to-chicago-s-poor
Cable News Network. (n.d.). Buffalo’s $1 homes aren’t as cheap as they seem. CNNMoney. Retrieved February 3, 2022, from https://money.cnn.com/2015/03/03/real_estate/buffalo-1-homes/index.html
Insight Hospital & Medical Center: Chicago. INSIGHT Chicago. (n.d.). Retrieved February 3, 2022, from https://insightchicago.com/
NBC Chicago. (2021, June 2). Mercy Hospital finalizes sale to keep doors open in Bronzeville. NBC Chicago. Retrieved February 3, 2022, from https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/new-mercy-hospital-owner-vows-full-service-until-2029/2523544/
Numerof, R. (2021, April 9). What Mercy Hospital’s $1 sale says about safety nets’ future. Forbes. Retrieved February 3, 2022, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/ritanumerof/2021/04/09/what-mercy-hospitals-1-sale-says-about-safety-nets-future/?sh=4c1831da33bc