February 1, 2010
Takeover of St. Vincent’s in NYC Would Retain Hospital’s HIV Services
A large New York City hospital system called Continuum Health Partners offered to take over St. Vincent’s Hospital in Greenwich Village, prompting an outcry from health care advocates who fear many hospital programs will be compromised, The New York Times reports. Continuum affirmed that St. Vincent’s well-known HIV and psychiatric services would continue.
St. Vincent’s—which is facing its second bankruptcy and about $700 million in debt—is reportedly the last Catholic general hospital in the city. It treats thousands of poor, homeless and uninsured patients.
According to the article, Continuum would turn St. Vincent’s into a walk-in clinic. While it would still offer emergency care, it would no longer take 911 calls.
According to the article, city officials have reacted strongly to the proposal. West Side politicians such as City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn, Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer and U.S. Representative Jerrold L. Nadler sent a letter to State Health Commissioner Richard F. Daines. They labeled the proposal “unacceptable” because it would leave many patients on the West Side of Manhattan without a hospital.
Quinn suggested a state-sponsored bailout or a restructuring as an alternative to the takeover.
“No one’s cavalier about the seriousness of St. Vincent’s financial house,” she told the Times. “But what we need is to come together and find a solution that keeps it open, not one that basically abdicates the state’s responsibility to have full-service health care infrastructure for the West Side of Manhattan.”
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