Wednesday, March 20, 2013

SUNY Reaffirms It Just Wants LICH to Die, Already

SUNY’s board of trustees voted on Tuesday again to close Brooklyn’s Long Island College Hospital (LICH), this time at a meeting in Purchase, New York.

This is the second vote to close the 150-year-old hospital. Judge Johnny Lee Baynes ruled last week that the original board meeting didn’t comply with the Open Meetings Law. With less than 24 hours notice and a venue 40 miles north of NYC, it's not likely this one did either.

LICH supporters filled three buses to testify again about SUNY Downstate's misrepresentations and mismanagement.

But in a pre-baked vote that stunk to high heaven, the SUNY board voted to administer the lethal injection. Supporters say they'll continue to fight, and the state Dept. of Health is supposed to have some say so.

There will be a candlelight vigil at 8 p.m. tonight (Wednesday) outside LICH at Atlantic and Hicks in Cobble Hill.

Some memorable quotes from Tuesday's "hearing":

"You nurses should understand, sometimes we have to make sacrifices.” (SUNY Downstate’s head, Dr. John Williams.)

"We will fight this all the way to the governor's office."  (Loreto Gasmen, operating room nurse)

 “If LICH closes, Brooklyn will lose 16 fully equipped operating rooms and the only stroke center in the borough.” (Mickey Green of the New York State Nurses Association)

"Unbelievable. SUNY voted to close #LICH w/o a plan to replace the access to care it provided." (Sal Albanese)

 "We don’t have a real estate plan. It’s true that if LICH were to close the state would like to get their money back . . .” (H. Carl McCall, chair of the SUNY Board of Trustees)

 ". . . There are only 250 beds. Yesterday we had 230 in the hospital and 60 in the ER waiting to be admitted, notwithstanding their attempts to divert patients.” (Herdley Hill, RN at LICH’s Department of Psychiatry)

"We commend Dr. John Williams and his team at Downstate Medical for their commitment to preserving and ultimately strengthening this hidden jewel of the SUNY system." (SUNY statement)

"All these upstate people had our lives in their hands, but nobody there cared about the health of people in Brooklyn.” (Trudy Wassener, LICH patient)

Previous posts on LICH here.

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