This is a very sad story. The Motion Picture and Television Hospital and Nursing home is closing this year. This care center in Woodland Hills, California was the last home Edna Purviance stayed during her last months with cancer in the late 1950s.
Lita said the family would visit Edna there often, taking her favorite family dog to visit with them. In the interview with Lita Hill, we show a photo of Edna with Tippy, taken at the home. It is the last known photo of Edna.
The home has fell onto hard times due to the ever increasing cost of health care in America. Funding has been tough. It is reported the home has been loosing about 10 million dollars a year.
The home was founded by Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks and D.W. Griffith. Lita told me, Edna Purviance also helped with funding for the home. Edna didn't know it would be her last home, as she died there on January 13, 1958.
From Reuters UK:
"The Motion Picture & Television Fund said Wednesday it is phasing out an acute-care hospital and long-term care facility at its Wasserman Campus in Woodland Hills to cut operating losses. In 2006, the MPTF closed a critical-care unit at the hospital, also over money issues.
"Although we are in good shape today, the acute-care hospital and long-term care facility are generating operating deficits that could bankrupt MPTF in a very few years," said Jeffrey Katzenberg, board chairman at the MPTF Foundation, which oversees fundraising.
In announcing its hospital phase-out, the Hollywood-supported organization said it would expand community-based services by establishing a network of "community care teams" to coordinate and expand home-based and other medical and social services to entertainment industry retirees.
The nonprofit MPTF traces its history to 1921, when Mary Pickford, Charlie Chaplin and others created the Motion Picture Relief Fund to support economically challenged industryites. Its 44-acre retirement village was created two decades later, and health services including off-site care at six outpatient centers continued to expand over subsequent years.
The organization's funding includes regular industry philanthropy and contributions by Hollywood labor organizations.
The hospital and long-term care facility have been losing an estimated $10 million annually over the past few years, part of an even great operating deficit the MPTF has had to carry. Officials said the moves would reduce MPTF red ink to a manageable level."
Some 209 job cuts will accompany the hospital and long-term care phase-outs. The roughly 100 patients residing in the long-term facility will be relocated over the next several months to area nursing homes, but the moves will not affect some 185 residents of MPTF's independent and assisted-living facilities on the retirement campus." - Reuters, UK
This link has a short article and video about the home. Apparently, the people living there were just informed today, they will have only 90 days to leave. As one man puts it, where? I don't have anywhere to go and paid my money to be here...
January 23, 2009 - I don't know for sure how long this story will be on the web, but it is the latest about the protest against the closing of the Motion Picture Hospital. LINK
UPDATE FEBRUARY 5, 2009 - Thank you for your comment. I am placing this comment here again, so our other readers on the regular post list can read this:
"I have been an employee at the MPTV Fund for the last 10 years. This is not only a sad story it is criminal. The "Board" NEVER in the last four years reached out to ANYONE regarding the supposed losses/deficit. They have turned away ALL donations for the home to remain open.
They did this on purpose and with malice. For the board this killing two birds with one stone. They are able to take the charity into a different direction without regard to HUMAN LIFE. AND to dismantle the Union by eliminating over 200 Union employees.
Where is their responsibility to human life? Do they simply do Charity for SPORT? It seems that way. Research what I'm saying.
Please Join us in standing up for the vulnerable. We are holding a candlelight vigil in front of the home on 2/12 at 5pm to help stop the criminal EVICTION of over 100 residence.
23388 Mulholland Dr. Woodland Hills
of the 101 fwy north and Mulholland towards Calabasas."
February 11, 2009 - Latest from the LA TIMES
MARCH 13, 2009 - No plans for eviction, but, residents still have to leave.
July 26, 2009 - Latest from Variety (note link may disappear from web)
January 14, 2010 - One Year Later Report from LA Noir (The Wrap).
Update February 4, 2010 - CEO of the fund for the Motion Picture home, Dr. David Tillman, resigned.