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Concerned citizens protest Penn Highlands’ decision to close Force medical facility

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DUBOIS — As Penn Highlands Healthcare prepares to close their medical facility in the Bennetts Valley community of Force in Elk County next week, concerned citizens gathered to protest in DuBois this week.

Those who gathered in a protest on Main Street in front of the Penn Highlands DuBois facilities said their goal was to have their voices heard, and that closing the Force office should be reconsidered.

In a published statement, Penn Highlands said the decision to consolidate the Force and Ridgway clinic locations was made after careful consideration, and that patients in Force will still have access to care within 20 minutes or less travel time.

Some of the protest signs Thursday questioned why Penn Highlands would cut off medical services in Force, and at the same time expand in areas like State College where a $70-million facility is being built.