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Downtown Hospital Gets New Ambulances

By Julie Shapiro | November 18, 2011 4:33pm

LOWER MANHATTAN — New York Downtown Hospital is getting more ambulances and paramedics to serve Lower Manhattan's growing population.

The hospital — which has the only emergency room south of 14th Street — will now have four round-the-clock ambulances, plus a specialized Critical Care Transport ambulance to move seriously ill patients from New York Downtown Hospital to other hospitals, officials announced Friday.

"As Lower Manhattan continues to grow, these new ambulances will help ensure that Downtown Hospital's great care reaches those who need it," said State Sen. Daniel Squadron, who recently held a meeting with the FDNY to advocate for the additional ambulances.

After speaking to Squadron, the FDNY agreed to add a full-time basic life-support ambulance and an overnight advanced life-support ambulance to New York Downtown Hospital, the hospital said. The basic life-support ambulance will be sent on calls for injuries like broken bones, while the advanced life-support ambulance will handle life-threatening injuries.

Separately, Downtown Hospital also bought a Critical Care Transport ambulance with a $200,000 grant from BNY Mellon and The George Link, Jr. Foundation. The ambulance has specialized features including ventilators that enable it to carry critically injured or sick patients who need specific services offered at other hospitals.

Squadron said the new ambulances are particularly important following the closure of St. Vincent's Hospital last year and the dramatic increase in Lower Manhattan's population, which has nearly doubled since 9/11.

New York Downtown Hospital's emergency room now sees more than 40,000 patients a year, President Jeffrey Menkes said in a statement.

"These new resources give the Downtown community very important additions to our ability to respond quickly to medical emergencies," Menkes said.