An uncertain restructuring process unfolds now that Steward Healthcare has officially filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, leaving a lot of questions as to what comes next for Steward-owned hospitals in the Mahoning and Shenango Valleys.

The news comes as National Nurses Week is underway. Local nurses working for Trumbull Regional Medical Center, owned by Steward, are surely feeling that uncertainty, but it comes with optimism, in hopes change could fix long-standing problems.

Trumbull Regional Medical Center Nurse Tom Connelly said he hopes Steward Health filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy means a new chapter for the hospital, and by the new chapter, he means a new owner: one that prioritizes retaining more doctors and nurses with good pay, and a "patient-over-profit" attitude.

"We're hoping that maybe a new owner and a new influx of money and capital will make our hospital even better," Connelly said, "I hope another company buys us. I also hope that it's a not-for-profit company. Most people's experience in healthcare, when they have to deal with for-profit entities, do not fare so well, and we're kind of proof of that now."

The optimism doesn't come without worry.

While two Trumbull Regional nurses said they hope the potential from restructuring brings new leadership to tackle what they call, "long-standing issues," there's fear in the unknown.

"It's Chapter 11. We don't know what's going to happen," Trumbull County Regional Nurse Vanessa Satterthwaite, said, "It's the uncertainties."

The Ohio Nurses Association represents nurses of the Steward-owned Hillside Rehabilitation Hospital.

ONA's president said the "immediate concern" was ensuring those beds stay open. 

"We want to see our community and elected leaders stand alongside us to hold Steward accountable to provide care, to continue providing care to the community during this this transition time," ONA President and Executive Director Rick Lucas, said. 

Chair of the Mercer County Commissioners Ann Coleman said in part, they are hopeful the bankruptcy will allow Steward to make Sharon Regional attractive to another entity to take over, and adds she would also rather see it turned over to a nonprofit that puts the needs of the community first.