A state judge has ordered North Adams Regional Hospital's parent company to temporarily continue emergency room services it had planned to end Friday.
Northern Berkshire Healthcare owns the hospital, a visiting nurse and hospice group, and three medical practices. It announced Tuesday it was shutting down because of a ``worsening financial status.''
Attorney General Martha Coakley is seeking an injunction to allow time to avoid a ``regional health crisis'' leaving people in the rural northwestern Massachusetts area up to 45 minutes away from an emergency room.
Superior Court Judge John Agostino in Pittsfield granted a temporary order Thursday keeping the emergency room and essential health services open at least until April 3, when another hearing is set.
Berkshire Medical Center in Pittsfield is working to get the state license for a satellite emergency center at the North Adams hospital. Meantime, an around the clock vigil is continuing in the hopes that the facility may remain open full time.