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YOUNGSTOWN YOH has patients' records available



Published: Sat, April 20, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



The old records were boxed and stored away when the hospital closed in spring 2000.

By CYNTHIA VINARSKY

VINDICATOR BUSINESS WRITER

YOUNGSTOWN -- Former Youngstown Osteopathic Hospital patients have about six months to retrieve their old medical records from the defunct medical center.

After that, the records will be destroyed.

The bankrupt hospital's estate will begin advertising the patient records disposal plan Sunday, as ordered by Judge William T. Bodoh of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court here.

Under the plan, former YOH patients or their insurance providers have 180 days to request their records by mail. Records covered by the court order include medical charts, X-ray films and other forms of data.

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A spokesman for the Cleveland attorney handling the YOH bankruptcy case said advertisements explaining the record request process will be published in The Vindicator and other area newspapers starting Sunday.

He said the mailing address and other pertinent information will be listed in the ads, which will be repeated monthly during the 180-day period.

Patients must request their records by mail, including a coupon from the newspaper ad, and must send a $15 check to cover the record search. Other fees also may be charged to cover postage and other expenses.

The hospital closed in March 2000 after 47 years in the community and about one year after its owners filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Patients were given two months to pick up their records then, before officials began packing them up for long-term storage.

CMD Realty, a Youngstown-based investment group, bought the former hospital building on 8.5 acres on the city's North Side in November.

Chris Tornello, a CMD spokesman, said then that the new owners planned to renovate and lease the property as office space to government agencies, health-care providers, community service agencies and others. He said the plan was expected to create as many as 300 jobs, including construction, housekeeping, security and maintenance.

CMD officials could not be reached Friday to discuss the status of the building renovation and office leasing plans.

vinarsky@vindy.com




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