Denis Hamill: IS 293 Student’s Life Saved at LICH Wednesday; Would Likely Have Died if LICH Not Available

Denis Hamill’s column in the Daily News tells of a dramatic lifesaving effort at the Long Island College Hospital ER, and of LICh’s lack of critical medical supplies. Read more on CHB.

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  • BrooklynGuy

    Such a dramatic article…the child wasn’t brought back from the dead. If he was dead, you cannot defibrillate (shock) someone.

    As someone who previously worked at LICH, the place needs to close down. It is bleeding money by the second. Saving precious minutes for treatment of acute cases is all very exciting and a great excuse, but it’s a weak one. With that attitude, there should be a hospital every 10 blocks in the city. I’ve treated patients at both LICH and a major hospital in the city. I also live in Brooklyn Heights. In case of an emergency, I’d rather be brought to a hospital in Manhattan…honestly.

  • Nick

    Not sure about your medical knowledge, BrooklynGuy… The child had SCA, Sudden Cardiac Arrest, which is clinical death. A defibrillation is exactly what is done to restore ventricular fibrillation to a normal rhythm. It is about as dramatic as it gets. You are DEAD wrong, as you are about closing a hospital. And good luck getting to that hospital in Manhattan in rush hour gridlock… honestly.

  • BrooklynGuy

    As a physician, who has seen patients arrest numerous times, I actually do know what arresting is. The things is..when laypeople write about death, do you honestly they are talking about clinical death? Get real. Death to a layperson is after an MD/NP calls the time of expiration. I’ve done that…how about you? You are getting into semantics here.

    As a commuter, I am also aware about traffic….which, however, does not necessitate a hospital staying open. It can take 30 minutes to get crosstown. Should there be a hospital on park, madison, 5th, and 6th avenues? Time is precious…

  • Wiley E.

    So in this matter, honestly, what is in your selfish best interest? A condo when the property is turned over, or a deceased loved one?

  • BrooklynGuy

    Neither….I’m already a homeowner. I’m just a realist. Vital parts of communities close all the time…schools, hospitals, fire stations….

    In the end, it’s a failing business. It’s got to close.

  • MD

    The widespread placement of paramedic services in neighborhoods can accomplish similar dramatic saves. The presence of a hospital/MD for that kind of case is not essential. That said: Less money spent on bombs/war and more spent on medical care/schools/libraries/arts and we could legitimately call ourselves civilized.

  • gc

    “In case of emergency I’d rather be brought to a hospital in Manhattan … honestly.” Sounds like a good plan BrooklynGuy except the ambulance doesn’t ask where you want to be brought. You will be going on a 10 or 20 minute ride into Brooklyn not Manhattan.

  • A Neighbor

    It’s a failing business — because it has been badly run by amateurs for years. It does not follow that because a bunch of non-professionals have run it into the ground it should be closed. Yes, hospitals are a challenge to operate in the black, but all kinds of hospitals do it. LICH has one of the best payor populations in the borough.

  • Remsen Street Dweller

    To BrooklynGuy: LICH is not a failing business. It is a community hospital that was ripped off first by Continuum Health Partner, now SUNY. Which hospital(s) are you affiliated with?

    And, another thing, people don’t just need ERs and emergency treatment, they need hospitals — as a physician you know that. I’m surprised at your attitude.

  • BrooklynGuy

    LICH IS a failing business. No matter what the cause or who it was “ripped off” by, it is failing. Healthcare is moving towards outpatient/urgent care facilities…not in-patient care. As such, there needs to be more primary care providers and urgent care centers that practice primary care to prevent hospitalization (e.g. the urgent care center that is opening on Atlantic Ave). Brooklyn lost Victory Memorial Hospital awhile ago…that area seems to be doing fine.

    Yes, it is a loss for the community, but the community will have to deal. It’s life. We deal with other losses vital to our survival.

    To clarify also, people seem to harp on the fact that LICH is located in an affluent neighborhood and that is why it should be doing well. The community is actually serves is not the Cobble Hill/Boerum/Heights residents. They make up a minority of the people that are treated at LICH.

  • Remsen Street Dweller

    You are soooooooooooo wrong on so many counts. How many hospitals does Brooklyn and the rest of NYC have to lose? You CAN NOT always prevent hospitalization. I know that personally for a fact. How much money do you stand to make if LICH closes?

  • Remsen Street Dweller

    You just said it — vital parts of communities close all the time — schools, hospitals, fire stations!

  • BrooklynGuy

    Of course I said it…I don’t deny a hospital is important. But institutions close. St Vincent’s closed…Manhattan has survived that.

    You are acting as if the world will end with this specific hospital closure. Brooklyn will survive.

  • MK

    LOL. I think he/she realizes that you cannot always prevent hospitalization. That point you are making is ludicrous. I think everybody knows that for a fact. However, I agree that with such a closure, more focus should be placed on preventative medicine, health maintenance, and such so that one can reduce the risk of strokes, heart attacks, diabetes, and other costly chronic issues that contribute to expensive hospitalizations that drain our systems.

    Our nabe will survive this closure.

  • Remsen Street Dweller

    So, if you can’t always prevent hospitalization why close all our city hospitals? I don’t think that calling that stance “ludicrous” is either accurate or commendable.

  • MK

    I think you are making gross generalizations. The original poster was talking about LICH, and only LICH. Where did he/she mention closing “all our city hospitals”? The point is that one less hospital is not gonna make or break our city’s healthcare system. Yes, the state of healthcare, in general, sucks. Hospitals close, other hospitals expand. Just like any other business.

  • Remsen Street Dweller

    Just to mention a few — here is a list of some of the hospitals NYC has lost:

    Parkway Hospital
    Mary Immaculate
    St. Johns (Queens)
    Peninsula Hospital Center
    Victory Memorial
    Brooklyn Hospital Center, Caledonian Div.
    St. Mary’s Brooklyn
    St. Vincent’s (Manhattan)

  • MK

    That’s great…but you make no sense. Again, pay attention.

    All NYC hospitals aren’t being closed. We are talking about 1 hospital here. The original poster was not only speaking about LICH. Do you not understand this?

  • Remsen Street Dweller

    Good bye and good luck MK!

  • MK

    You, too. Perhaps you just realized that you weren’t making any sense. Good for you.

  • Nick

    It’s time to renew your ACLS card. That’s Advanced Cardiac Life Support, if you forgot from residency days. I’m not surprised that a fellow physician arrogantly proclaims a lay reporter is dramatic. The child was saved by EMS, stabilized at LICH and will survive clinical death and make a full recovery. Spout your half baked theories on sudden cardiac arrest and hospital closings to the parents of this child with a straight face, and then surrender your license.

  • Peds MD

    Wow. I am a pediatrician in private practice. The report is kind of dramatic…as are the TV advertisements. But that is the point…to pull on the heart strings of the communities. Change the story to an EMT bringing in someone to LICH who had a femoral fracture…does that have the same effect? No, it clearly doesn’t.

    The EMTs saved this kid’s life. If LICH wasn’t open, the kid would have been brought to another nearby hospital. The child was already stabilized by the EMTs. The extra 30 min or an hour likely would not have made a different. Then again, I am not a cardiologist.

    This argument is futile. Nobody is denying that LICH has saved lives. The fact that it has saved lives does not translate into keeping a failing business open.

    Also, I have a pediatrician for over 20 years. Who says clinical death?

  • Nick

    Indeed, an extra 30 minutes does make a difference if the sudden cardiac arrest is due to AMI or, in a small subset of pediatric patients, congenital cardiac channelopathies, including LQTS. Emergency cardiac cath with reperfusion and therapeutic hypothermia, both available at LICH, are essential treatments. But this argument digresses from the facts; the State Audit identified gross mismanagement and huge deficits at SUNY and only a $4M operating loss at LICH the fiscal year before SUNY took over. They paid huge consulting fees for cost savings were never implemented, entered into a costly contract with Continuum for billing, telecom and other services and then failed to bill and collect properly. They then lied about discussions relating to the real estate sale, and a Supreme Court judge has twice ruled against SUNY, with discovery documents now requested to prove their inaccurate financial statements. A hospital is not a ‘business’, and LICH, while imperfect, was far from ‘failing’.

  • HeightsResident

    ‘realist’? Really. I would argue you are a fool.

  • Jack D

    Nick–you are delusional if you do not think a hospital is a business. Your entire last post highlights poor BUSINESS organization. Hospitals are centers for healing and such, but in the end it IS a business. It offers health care services.

  • Rick

    “St Vincent’s closed…Manhattan has survived that.”
    Yes, except for the people who died because it closed.
    “Brooklyn will survive.”
    Yes, except for the people who will die if it closes.

    As Nick points out, LICH has been grossly mismanaged. But that is no reason to close it, but rather a reason to fix it. That happens all the time as evidenced by businesses that were failing badly but were fixed, like Ford, FedEx, Disney, Apple and Kentucky Fried Chicken. Proper management brought them back, the same needs to be done for LICH.

    But that of course ignores the fact that hospitals should not be viewed merely as businesses, but as vital services. The loss of a hospital is much more serious that the loss of a KFC. So the prospect of such a loss deserves more than a defeatist and callous attitude like the one that would say “deal with it”.

  • NotBrooklynGuy

    “Manhattan has survived” what makes you a soothsayer on the outcomes of trauma cases when Bellevue was closed and the first Level 1 Trauma Center from Battery Park north was Cornell on 68th and York….frankly, you’re talking out your rectum

  • Jay

    Do you have documentation of these trauma cases? Where are your stats coming from?

    People die in car crashes and aviation accidents. Should be outlaw those transportation services? Just like with anything, there are inherent risks and benefits. I say spend money more wisely on other health care services.

  • Nick

    Jay a.k.a. Brooklyn Guy, call Dr. Lewis Goldfrank, the preeminent Director of Bellevue Hospital’s ER and ask him the impact of not having a Level 1 Trauma Center in Manhattan south of 59th Street for 3 months. Your statement/rhetorical ? that people die in car crashes and aviation accidents…should we outlaw [them] is illogical and absurd. LICH had the best mix of insured/uninsured patients in Brooklyn, serves an economically thriving and growing community. Northshore/LIJ made a reasonable offer to take over LICH, but SUNY rejected it and failed to negotiate in good faith as they only want a land grab to solve their own years of mismanagement prior to taking over LICH. The Supreme Court Judge is requesting forensic accounting and relevant discovery to unravel their plan.

  • Jay

    Maybe those of you who are terrified of not having LICH due to not being located in a close proximity to a trauma center should move closer to one.

    I guess you guys can’t live on Long Island or any other area that is not convenient as NYC where access to such facilities is often several miles away.