Only One Bid Would Keep Hospital at LICH

By Nikhita Venugopal on February 6, 2014 4:24pm 

 Long Island College Hospital at 339 Hicks St., in Cobble Hill.
Long Island College Hospital at 339 Hicks St., in Cobble Hill.
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University Hospital of Brooklyn

COBBLE HILL — Long Island College Hospital has one chance to become a full-service hospital.

A proposal from the Chinese Community Accountable Care Organization (CCACO) partnered with the Eastern Chinese American Physician IPA will bring 100 inpatient beds, adding 50 beds per year until a maximum of 250 beds is reached — a number significantly smaller than the 506 beds that occupied LICH.

The group's proposal, the only one out of five contenders to pitch a full-service hospital for the LICH campus, will be funded by former mayoral candidate John Catsimatidis and Rudy Washington, former deputy mayor to Rudy Giuliani, according to the group’s representative.

The proposal would include an ambulatory care center to “provide primary care and multi-specialty care on an urgent and walk-in basis” with extended office hours, according to the proposal.

The CCACO’s proposal would also add residential units to the building, but a representative did not immediately have a specific number.

The five bidders for LICH — CCACO, Brisa Builders Corporation, Brooklyn Hospital Center, Fortis Property Group and the Peebles Corporation — presented their redevelopment plans for LICH on Wednesday at Borough Hall during a taping organized by Borough President Eric Adams, who hosted a question-and-answer session with the developers.

The program was supposed to air Wednesday night but failed to do so because of technical issues. It was scheduled to air several times Thursday, Brooklyn Independent Media tweeted.

When Adams asked the four other bidders why a full-service hospital wasn’t in their plans, representatives said based on surveys, statistics and studies they had received through SUNY’s “Request for Proposal” process, it was determined that a full-service hospital was not “needed or feasible” for the area.

During the short presentations, there were overlapping points in the five proposals, like affordable or market-rate housing, maintenance and creation of jobs and a commitment to working with the community.

Fortis Property Group, partnering with NYU Langone, proposed a freestanding emergency room and a 24-hour primary and preventative healthcare facility with services in internal medicine, geriatrics, cardiology and a cancer center.

The Brooklyn Hospital Center, whose proposal was supported by State Sen. Velmanette Montgomery, will partner with Mount Sinai Medical Center and expand the hospital network with a 24-hour freestanding emergency department and four new primary and specialty care centers in the area.

The Peebles Corporation discussed adding 1,000 residential units of which 350 would be affordable housing. Its partner, the Institute of Family Health, would replicate its work at Harlem's North General Hospital in the Cobble Hill community.

But despite the State University of New York call for the “final and best” redevelopment plans for LICH to be submitted before Feb. 3, questions still remained for the latest proposals.

Brisa Builders Corporation, one of the five bidders, said Wednesday afternoon that it was in negotiations with North Shore-LIJ Health System, but the healthcare system has not actually dedicated itself to the process.

“North Shore-LIJ representatives are actively engaged in discussions with other providers in and outside the metropolitan area, and do not feel that we are in a position to submit a proposal for Long Island College Hospital at this time," Terry Lynam, a spokesman for the North Shore-LIJ, said in an email. 

"However, we will continue to pay close attention to developments at LICH and plan on keeping our options open as the situation evolves.” 

Brisa had planned to open a free-standing emergency room, a long-term acute care hospital with 100 beds and a “multispecialty medical arts clinic mall” with primary, specialty and diagnostic services, at the LICH campus.

SUNY Downstate Medical Center, LICH's operator, postponed a planned final presentation that bidders were scheduled to give the board of trustees on Thursday, according to Crain's New York. The delay will put a hold on the hospital's sale.

The full proposals can be seen here.

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