Patients and employees have to wait longer before learning what the future holds for three Valley hospitals.

Steward Health Care has told a bankruptcy judge that it is delaying until a date to be determined, the auction of Steward’s hospitals in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Arkansas, and Louisiana.

The Thursday morning auction was to have included Sharon Regional Medical Center in Sharon, Pennsylvania, Trumbull Regional Medical Center in Warren, Ohio, and Hillside Rehabilitation Hospital in Howland, Ohio.

A notice filed by Steward says the hospital system decided to postpone the auction while it evaluates bids it has received.

It isn't known if the auction will be held before a July 11 sale hearing in bankruptcy court.

The filing also notes that deadlines in the bidding process may be further delayed.

Steward, which operates 131 hospitals across the country, filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in May, claiming assets and liabilities between $1 billion and $10 billion.