St. Joseph’s Hospital in St. Paul closes emergency room

Wednesday marks a new chapter for one St. Paul hospital.

St. Joseph’s, in downtown, is starting its transition away from emergency care to COVID-19 care and long-term acute care.

The hospital closed the emergency room and stopped receiving ER patients Wednesday at 7 a.m.

Hospital officials said the massive overhaul is reflective of health care demand.

Nurses voice concerns over hospitals shutting down or downsizing during pandemic

Longtime employees are sad to see the ER close.

"This is my home," RN Gary Ackerman said. "This is my professional family and my friends. Today is a sad day but we’ll get through it."

Fairview Health Services said there are no layoffs in the ER closure.

Employees are being transferred to other hospitals or are retiring.