**FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE**
FEBRUARY 7, 2012
Contact: Aja Worthy-Davis (212) 788-7081
Council Member Letitia James Comments on the Proposed Closure of Long Island College Hospital
Interfaith Medical Center Hospital Announced Emergency Plans to Declare Bankruptcy In December
(New York, NY)— The State University of New York (SUNY) Downstate Medical Center is set to propose the closure of Long Island College Hospital (LICH) in an effort to fund the network, which reportedly lost over $200 million in 2012, following a $276 million loss in 2011.
With the potential closure of Interfaith Medical Center, which serves the Crown Heights and Bedford-Stuyvesant communities, it is a particularly precarious time for LICH to have to close its doors.
On February 8, 2013, employees of LICH and Interfaith Medical Center plan to hold a joint press conference to discuss the proposed closures. Employees of both hospitals have criticized SUNY, and have suggested that the proposed closures will facilitate the transition to for-profit healthcare in Brooklyn, citing “an experimental ‘pilot program’ in the governor’s draft budget that would allow private investors to create a for-profit hospital in Brooklyn.”
“Long Island College Hospital is vital to the Downtown Brooklyn community, which it has served for over 150 years,” said Council Member Letitia James. “There is no justification for closing hospitals, instead of providing them with the resources they need to be successful. These proposed shutdowns are deeply upsetting and should concern all Brooklyn residents.”
Long Island College Hospital recently merged with Downstate, after formerly being owned by Continuum Health Partners. The Board of Trustees of SUNY is expected to propose at its meeting this Friday that the hospital be closed. By law, there has to be a Public Meeting and Hearing to begin the process. The hearing will take place today, Thursday, February 7th, from 3:00-5:00 P.M. at the Auditorium of the College of Optometry, 33 West 42nd Street in Manhattan.
According to media reports, SUNY plans to sell the property to residential developers likely to create luxury condos.
Council Member Letitia James’ Statement on Interfaith Medical Center: http://teamtish.blogspot.com/2012/12/cm-james-comments-on-interfaith-medical.html