Lack of Resources Force Closure

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Brooklyn, NY, June 3, 2005 — Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers (SVCMC) announced today that its Board had reluctantly authorized management to submit a closure plan to the New York State Department of Health for St. Mary’s Hospital in Brooklyn.  St. Mary’s Hospital continues to experience heavy losses from operations, for the first four months of this year, it had an estimated $3.6 million operating loss.  Over the past three years, St. Mary’s Hospital has required $62 million from SVCMC to cover it operating losses and capital needs. 
Late in 2004, SVCMC began discussions to transfer operations of St. Mary’s to the Kingsbrook HealthCare System, also in Brooklyn. Kingsbrook recently terminated negotiations for a full transfer when it became evident that the facility would continue to need at least $10 million annually to cover operating losses and capital requirements. 
The required level of state support is not available in the current economic environment.  Since no other source of financial support has been identified to fund St. Mary’s losses, the Board approved proceeding with a closure.
SVCMC continues discussions with Kingsbrook HealthCare System, elected officials, and community leaders regarding the potential transfer of ambulatory services from St. Mary’s Hospital to Kingsbrook prior to the closure to meet the ongoing urgent and outpatient needs of Central Brooklyn residents.  SVCMC welcomes the input of any other alternatives from state and local officials.
The licenses for St. Mary’s methadone clinics and Mentally Ill Chemical Abusers (MICA) program will be transferred to Mary Immaculate Hospital and remain in their current locations; the residency program in dentistry will also be transferred to Mary Immaculate Hospital.
SVCMC will work with the appropriate unions, and with its dedicated physicians and employees to assist them identifying internal system job opportunities or in any other way possible.
As Governor Pataki convenes the new Health Facilities Commission, SVCMC will support Kingsbrook as it looks to access restructuring funding or other state funding to preserve outpatient and urgent health care services in the St. Mary’s Hospital community.