NEWS AND ISSUES


SENATOR DUANE DECRIES PROPOSED CLOSING OF ST. VINCENTfS MIDTOWN HOSPITAL

QUESTIONS BERGER COMMISSIONfS SUGGESTED CLOSURE OF HOSPITAL SERVING BOOMING TOURIST INDUSTRY AND GROWING BUSINESS AND RESIDENTIAL POPULATION

Manhattan, December 7, 2006

Senator Thomas K. Duane (D WFP | Manhattan) today denounced New York Statefs Commission on Health Care Facilitiesf recommendation to close St. Vincentfs Midtown Hospital. gI am extremely concerned about the ramifications of this for current and future Clinton, Hellfs Kitchen and Midtown residents, workers and visitors,h Senator Duane said in response to the Commissionfs findings.

Senator Duane added that the Commissionfs recommendation that St. Vincentfs Midtown close defies logic. gWith the City recently releasing the bonds intended to finance the Hudson Yards redevelopment | which will bring an explosion of new residential and business properties to the area | it is particularly poor planning to now take away such a vital public accommodation. Already there are millions of people who live, work and visit Hellfs Kitchen and Midtown, and that number will only grow with the Hudson Yards redevelopment, the Javits Center expansion and the Number 7 Subway extension.h

Senator Duane elaborated his concerns last Friday, December 1st, at the State Senate Health Committee hearing on the Commissionfs recommendations. As a member of the Health Committee, Senator Duane asked pointed questions on the inclusion of St. Vincentfs Midtown on the closure list, prompting the most intense discussion of the hearing.

Among the questions Senator Duane asked were: If St. Vincentfs Midtown is closed, where will victims be taken if a major disaster happens in Midtown or Times Square? Who will serve the 28 million tourists a year and the 8 million workers every day who are based in this area? What about the thousands of new people who will flood the area as a result of the Hudson Yards Rezoning?

gThere must be a solution that can be worked out,h said Senator Duane. gPerhaps the emergency room, for which there is a present and growing need, can be kept, or even expanded, even if non-emergency beds are eliminated,h Senator Duane suggested.

While he was unable to attend todayfs rally with St. Vincentfs Midtown staff, healthcare advocates, area workers and neighborhood residents, Senator Duane shares their commitment to preserving the hospital and he pledges to continue fighting its elimination.


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