Commissioners Express Concerns About Tyler ER Closure

Edited from Submitted Material

The Wyoming County Commissioners expressed their shock at the announcement that Commonwealth Tyler Memorial Hospital was closing all operations except for Urgent Care and limited laboratory and X-Ray capabilities. According to a media release from the commissioners office, each of them received personal calls from hospital administrator AnnMarie Stevens to let them know that the announcement would be made within the hour.

We are saddened and concerned for the community that will now be without emergency treatment, necessitating much longer trips to hospitals in Scranton and Wilkes-Barre. If a serious incident occurs and an extra half hour or more trip is necessary, we are very concerned that patients may not make it because there is no emergency room available to treat and stabilize them in close proximity.

The operation of a well-staffed emergency room is essential to the residents and businesses in this area. The lack of such a facility will hinder efforts to bring economic development and may force existing businesses to move out of the area to insure the safety of their employees if a serious accident should occur. We are working hard to attract new businesses to the area, and this is certainly a setback to those efforts. The lack of a hospital within a half hour or more of Wyoming County also makes us a less desirable location to raise families, and this decision may cause a loss of residents and force less to move in.

We have a major problem manning our local ambulances with volunteers, and the extra time required for each call may make the situation worse as volunteers just don’t have the time to add an hour or more to every ambulance call.

We are also very concerned for the 110 employees who will lose their jobs. In a release from Barry Hosier, Human Resources Manager, he states that the closure will be permanent. Hopefully employment will be offered in other Commonwealth facilities, but there is no guarantee that this will happen.

The commissioners will be working with Tyler and Commonwealth Health System management, local businesses and emergency care providers to come up with an alternate solution. Although not the best situation, the reopening of a stand-alone emergency room would be a much better situation than an urgent care setting that does not offer 24/7 staffing and will be only available for non-emergency situations.

We have a call set up on Thursday with the Wyoming County Task force that includes Rep. Karen Boback, Sen. Lisa Baker, the three commissioners, Human Services and EMA directors from the county, superintendents from Tunkhannock and Lackawanna Trail, Wyoming County Chamber of Commerce and AnnMarie Stevens, administrator of Tyler Memorial Hospital. The closure of most services and what alternatives we have will be the main and probably only topic of discussion at this meeting.

Please be assured that your commissioners will do whatever is necessary to keep emergency services open in Wyoming County to serve our residents and businesses.”


Wyoming County Commissioners Rick Wilbur, Tom Henry, and Ernie King


  1. Glad to hear that the commissioners are concerned and choosing to act. In addition citizen’s input is necessary in order to get results.
    We need to get P&G involved as well as the gas industry. Church groups, clubs, such as Rotary need to use their influence to achieve the goal. As a community we have to save the ER . I believe we can.

  2. Good to hear. As a nurse for over 30 years, this concerns me very much. I was a candy striper at Tyler when I was 14 and then resumed my work there when I move back to Pennsylvania as an ICU nurse at Tyler. I have worked at mini hospital system since then as a travel nurse and regular staff nurse. I can tell you my experience is working for CHS at one of their other facilities in the ER During Covid was not good. CHS is a for profit facility, therefore money is their bottom line not people. Staff should not have to beg for help or equipment to take care of people an emergency situations. I am also very concerned as stated, as once I was on Tunkhannock ambulance as a volunteer, that the extra time it will take to transfer every patient to Scranton Wilkes-Barre will put all the volunteer services at great risk of not having enough staff. My last concern is that patients who are in critical condition I need to be trans ported the extra miles will need paramedics on board. Will CHS provide extra paramedics to the Wyoming County area do you ride on board with these patients that need ALS treatment? I highly doubt it. Wyoming County is in serious trouble without Tyler to at least stabilize patients and then transfer. Being the only hospital within 30 miles of many people they should be considered a critical access hospital and therefore receive funding for the same. Thank you For hearing me out.

  3. I still wouldn’t go to Commonwealth in Wilkes Barre or Scranton. I would prefer Guthrie in Towanda. Hopefully Guthrie can be enticed to present a bigger presence in our County.

    1. 40 miles is a bit far for emergencies though.

  4. Tyler hospital needs to stay just the way it is or better. The community needs that facility. It’s a terrific facility and all the staff is terrific. Courtious and knowledgable.

  5. It is unfortunate that it’s come to this. Our community needs a hospital for emergencies and not have to drive over 45 minutes to get care. God forbid I was having chest pain and having a heart attack. I wouldn’t make it. We need to keep the ER open for these types of emergencies. Please keep Tyler Hospital open not just for the town of Tunkhannock but for those that live in between whom may use this facility as well. We have major companies that send their injuries workers there to be seen now where are they supposed to go?

  6. I am glad, but not surprised, that our commissioners jumped right in this. They are aware that this is going to impact our community in many ways. As an emergency volunteer and president of the FWM Emergency Squad I am very concerned in the impact this change is going to have on the care that we will be able to provide to our community. It is not uncommon to have several back to back calls in our community involving all of our local agencies. When, not if, our patients are going to suffer because we have such extended turn around times. Instead of a 20-30 minute travel time to Tyler you will now be talking our teams will be out of service to serve others for 2-3 hours. This should concern everyone.

  7. Thank you to those who are taking up this challenge. Losing the emergency room is indeed an extreme concern that affects the entire community’s health as well as its desirability as a place to live. I am personally very uncomfortable living so far from an emergency room and I pray a practical solution can be found.

  8. Curious as to what kind of or if there’s even a relationship between Commonwealth Health and P&G. For a long time there was a contract between the two.

  9. I wonder what P&G thinks of this?? It is the biggest company in the area next to the gas companies!! This is not shocking that it is closing but they def need to keep the ER open. This is CRAZY that this is happening to our small town. Everyone you can try to go Montrose if you need but I think this is a BIG MISTAKE closing Tyler Hospital.

  10. As a community we have to do whatever it takes to keep our local hospital emergency room open in this rural area with 40 minutes to an hour drive to the nearest hospital there has to be an answer, there has to be financial assistance. Our hospital should not be sacrificed.

  11. There has been so much posted on this topic so I may have missed this but how does the largest employer in our area, P&G, feel about this knowing that they had a very close emergency treatment center for any issues they may have, God forbid, if one or more of their employees are negatively affected and need immediate treatment or a close facility to stabilize a patient to send to a larger hospital???

  12. It’s tragic, no doubt…but do you hear yourselves?
    “Greed”…”all about the money”…”not community oriented”…Let me ask all of you this; can YOU run your household on no money?

    Instead of complaining, create a community task force. Research what other small communities have done in similar situations and be proactive in finding a solution instead sitting back on your heels and doing nothing more than placing blame.

    Put all that energy into being part of the solution not the problem.


    Hospitals, Doctors, clinics are A BUSINESS…no different than Wal-Mart. If you stopped shopping at Wal-Mart, do you think they would stay open as a courtesy to the community?

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