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Hampden County Physician Associates Shutters All Offices

SPRINGFIELD — As part of its ongoing bankruptcy proceedings, Hampden County Physician Associates (HCPA) closed down its offices Friday and cancelled all appointments. The next step in the network’s request to move from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection to Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation and cease operations is a hearing this morning at the U.S. District Courthouse in Springfield. The move could leave 50,000 patients without healthcare.

Hampden County Physician Associates filed for bankruptcy protection on Sept. 29, citing physician departures and declining revenues. Court documents say the organization has $3.3 million in assets and $5.4 million in liabilities, while gross income at its 16 practice locations has fallen from $39 million in 2013 to $25 million so far in 2014.

The liquidation procedure could allow Noble Hospital in Westfield and the Sisters of Providence Health System to take over many HCPA operations. Currently, Noble Hospital plans to hire seven primary-care doctors and about 20 support staff from HCPA, taking on 18,000 to 20,000 patients and doubling the size of Noble’s primary-care practice. Meanwhile, five former HCPA allergists have created their own group practice, called Allergy and Immunology Associates of New England.

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