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Letter: Chinese democracy is the cure for what ails LICH

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To the editor,

At Tuesday evening’s Saint Francis College gathering regarding the future of Long Island College Hospital four bids presented included hospitals.

Two of the four bids called for 100-bed hospitals in a new hospital; one estimating 9-10 years of build time and the other starting to build in 2-3 years.

Another bid came from a beach in Rio and promised the stars.

The result of those bids, if one is chosen: many years with a 100-bed hospital where LICH now stands, still proudly.

And builders’ plans change: Saint Vincent’s Hospital in Manhattan was promised 100,000 square feet for medical use, but that never happened.

Because a 100-bed hospital is not large enough to provide a full-service, acute-care hospital in the downtown of a major metropolitan area, the 460,000 people being served by LICH and seen in the LICH emergency room — which treats more than 60,000 people each year — will be badly served. And nearby hospitals will be overrun.

LICH was a 250-bed, full-service, acute-care Hospital until 11 months ago, and into the distant past — and 90 percent occupied.

The Chinese Community Accountable Care Organization’s bid calls for starting with a 150-bed hospital and increasing to 200 beds in the first year and 250 in the second. The plan is to use the present buildings and reestablish the Hospital, then consider other uses for available space and nearby properties, focusing on medical use.

The focus in that plan is on the hospital. The other bids are focused on the real estate.

The Organization is made up of 250 local doctors and administrators. Its members live here and work here and raise their families here.

The Organization’s approach is to include the LICH staff that remains and invite those that left to return, including senior administrators. A fast and smooth transition, compared to the upheavals resulting from an outside management team that lives Indiana or Atlanta, and has never before visited Brooklyn, is assured.

There can be no question that the Organization’s energy for making LICH vibrant and excellent once again will be dramatically different from the energy of the condo builders or the professional hospital rejuvenate-ers, for whom this is just another piece to play with on the board of their game.

Respectfully,

Jon Berall, Brooklyn Heights

The author is a private physician in Brooklyn Heights and formerly an ombudsman who monitored Long Island College Hospital for Brooklyn Supreme Court judges William C. Thompson and Johnny Lee Baynes.

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Reasonable discourse

So Long LICH from Brooklyn says:
The Chinese bid is NOT what anyone wants here - this isn't China Town.

I rather all condo's than this.

Let's settle for the smaller version where we keep the emergency care and then go off to a specialty care facility if necessary.

Remember, we don't want this just to keep nurses employed. We want it only so we have somewhere close to go to get the immediate care we need - that's how it works now - gone are the days where on facility does it all (which is what LICH tried to keep doing and why it failed.
March 28, 2014, 9:33 am
So Long LICH from Brooklyn says:
The Chinese bid is NOT what anyone wants here - this isn't China Town.

I rather all condo's than this.

Let's settle for the smaller version where we keep the emergency care and then go off to a specialty care facility if necessary.

Remember, we don't want this just to keep nurses employed. We want it only so we have somewhere close to go to get the immediate care we need - that's how it works now - gone are the days where on facility does it all (which is what LICH tried to keep doing and why it failed.
March 28, 2014, 9:33 am
James Kim from Flatbush says:
There is absolutely no way state will approve an increase of inpatient beds. They will be shrinking the number of beds everywhere weather the citizens of Brooklyn like it or not.

Also please stop publishing that 90% number. Bears no relation to reality. That bed has over 500 beds staffed or not. The citizens of new york state is paying for that space.
March 28, 2014, 12:06 pm
Reader says:
LICH operated 250 beds & was more than 90% fully occupied everyday. But it's licensed for 500 beds. All of the hospital operator's bids except for 1 proposes to REDUCE the number of licensed beds from 500 to between 200- 300. That's at least 50% LESS beds than is currently on paper. If youre talking about bed #, there's no reason to refuse those bids. None of them add beds - 3 of the 4 actually reduce the # of beds.
March 28, 2014, 2:45 pm
BKnative from BK says:
The most experienced successful operator among the bidders is the Prime Health. They don't propose to tear down buildings & construct towers for 5-9 years. They are ready to sit down with the community & talk about uses of the other buildings while they come right in & resume full operations where the hospital stands. The company is a doctor from Brooklyn with award winning facilities. To me, Prime is the only proven hospital operator & the best choice.
March 28, 2014, 2:50 pm
LICHer from Cobble Hill says:
The only place 500 beds exists at LICH is on the paper its license is written on. Floors inside the building that used to have beds more than a decade ago have been converted to other uses. Like out patient & woman's services. There are no beds there but the license doesn't reflect that. So LICH has a license to be able to operate 500 beds but it does not HAVE 500 beds. It had a capacity for 250 & was full to capacity everyday. Don't discriminate against a bidder because of the color of their skin. The Chinese bid sounds reasonable.
March 28, 2014, 3:03 pm
BKnative from BK says:
Funny that the writer mentions "this is just another piece to play with on the board of their game" in reference to the real estate developers & executives who want the LICH property.

Brooklyn Hospital is having its Founders Ball & the swag that each guest gets to take home is Brooklyn Hospital's own new Monopoly-like board game with options to purchase real estate, brand monuments, and put a condominium on every corner." I kid you not.

http://www.brooklyneagle.com/articles/brooklyn-hospital-foundation-honor-financier-physician-founders-ball-2014-03-28-171500
March 28, 2014, 3:10 pm

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