NY1: Interfaith Supporters Rally to Protest Denial of State Funds
A rally to save Interfaith Medical Center by reminding state officials they need to keep the hospital funded took place Sunday, two days after ambulances were temporarily diverted from the facility.
The state cut off funding for Interfaith Medical Center only weeks after agreeing to keep the hospital funded until March. This happened because the hospital board voted to continue running its own clinics, though it had also agreed to turn them over to Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center earlier.
It was when the funds did not come on Friday when ambulances were diverted from the emergency room, causing a leadership crisis at Interfaith. The chief medical officer took over for the CEO and its future is uncertain.
Representatives of the state Department of Health arrived unannounced at Interfaith on Sunday morning to decide whether it's worth keeping the hospital afloat.
Later, supporters of Interfaith, including Public Advocate Letitia James, rallied outside.
“This hospital will close by the end of this week. They do not have sufficient resources to meet the next payroll. This is the last payroll,” said James.
“There is no responsible reason to allow for the closure of Interfaith Hospital,” said Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, who represents parts of Brooklyn and Queens.
The community hopes that the state health department will see a hospital that is at 104 percent capacity and that it’s worth keeping open.