August 26, 2013
By Stephanie West
New York, NY— Plaintiffs in the legal action to keep Long Island College Hospital open secured a major victory with a court order that binds SUNY and the State Department of Health to remove impediments to medical care and will appoint an independent monitor to assure compliance.
After weeks of SUNY unlawfully curtailing medical services, putting staff on leave and obstructing patient care, the new order puts in place a regime to preserve vital services and prevent further violations of the law until litigation is resolved. The order was secured through litigation by Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, New York State Nurses Association, Concerned Physicians at L.I.C.H., 1199SEIU, and several community organizations.
The judge’s order requires SUNY to immediately put into effect:
Full restoration of staffing and services which were available as of July 19, including an active Emergency Department, Intensive Care Unit, inpatient medical beds, as well as laboratory, radiology, social work and pharmacy services.
“SUNY tried to padlock this hospital four weeks ago. We’ve watched it violate court orders in broad daylight. Now, the court is putting all that to an end. These steps will ensure this community will have continuity of care for the immediate future,” said Public Advocate Bill de Blasio. “This is a huge step forward.”