St. Vincent's Hospital Shuts Down



Her lawsuit included a transgender man who lauded the quality of care
and sensitivity he received at St. Vincent’s. That feeling
is not uncommon within the uniquely close relationship that geography and
circumstances forged between the LGBT
community and the Catholic hospital.

“There’s a level of respect
and dignity that’s given to LGBT families that is very important,” said
Kurland. “You can’t just create that. That’s something that comes with
an ongoing commitment.”

This week Gov. David Paterson
announced $14 million in grants to open an urgent care facility in place
of the emergency room at St. Vincent’s, but the
services, to be located on-site for the next few years, will be
nowhere near as extensive. Residents will need to travel across
congested city blocks for bona fide emergencies, a point they hammered home
at a rally against the closure last weekend.

Friday evening
advocates will hold the first community town hall meeting to address the
closing of St. Vincent’s and weigh potential next steps. They hope to draw
elected officials to hear the public input missing from the debate so

“The perfect scenario is, whether it’s the old St.
Vincent’s, the new St. Vincent’s, or a hospital with a different name at
the same site, we have the same services but better managed so we
don’t have to worry about losing necessary services every five years,”
said Kurland. “We need the same level of services, but better.”

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