PETITION: Open Long Beach Medical Center
TO: The Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor of New York State
Long Beach Medical Center remains closed since Superstorm Sandy caused major damage to critical infrastructure. Although repairs have been made and the Medical Center is prepared to restore essential services to the community it serves, the Department of Health is using the tragedy of Hurricane Sandy to reduce the availability of emergency and inpatient services in Long Beach and the surrounding communities.
The New York State Commission on Health Care Facilities in the 21st Century (Berger Commission) determined that “There are approximately 40,000 residents in Long Beach and its adjacent island communities. There is a relatively large concentration of nursing homes, adult homes and assisted living facilities in Long Beach, and 16% of the population is over 65 years old. Because of the concentration of healthcare and housing facilities for the elderly, summer-time surges in population, recreational and boating facilities, geographic isolation and dependence on drawbridges to access the mainland, LBMC, despite its size and unstable financial situation, must remain open so that the community has appropriate access to emergency services and acute care. 88% of LBMC inpatients who are Long Beach residents were admitted under an emergent classification and 68% of Long Beach residents who were admitted to other hospitals also were categorized as emergent.” This study, performed by independent examiners and commissioned by the NYS Department of Health has been confirmed through subsequent evaluation.
While the Federal government stands ready to help Long Beach Medical Center rebuild stronger and better than before, the Department of Health stands in the way.
The loss of Long Beach Medical Center is a devastating blow to the entire healthcare system in south western Nassau County and the Rockaways. Not only does it jeopardize the lives of those living on and visiting the communities of Long Beach, LidoBeach, Pt. Lookout and Atlantic Beach, but it has created delays in emergency care and ambulance turnaround times throughout the area.
We ask you, Governor Cuomo, to intervene on our behalf and assure that the citizens of Nassau and Queens counties to be allowed to recover from Superstorm Sandy and re-establish the essential healthcare services we had prior to this tragedy.