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Hospital: ‘We’ll Remain Full-Service’

More than 100 local area residents turned out Feb. 12 at Glen Cove City Hall to hear a panel of administrators from Glen Cove Hospital and North Shore-LIJ, along with doctors, city officials and consultants, discuss the latest developments in the hotly debated plans for changes in the operation of the 90-year-old Glen Cove Hospital.

 

This past summer, NS-LIJ announced it was moving its highly regarded orthopedic unit to Syosset Hospital, which is also part of the North Shore Health Care system. The announcement sparked an outpouring of opposition by the community to what many perceived as a first step to closing the hospital.

 

At the meeting, hospital administrators and doctors affiliated with the hospital gave assurances that “the hospital is not closing,” according to Mark Salazzo, executive vice president and chief operating officer of the North Shore-LIJ Health Care System. 

 

The sentiment was echoed by Dr. George Dunn, a long-time family medicine practitioner in Glen Cove.  “The hospital is going to stay open; it’s going to be a full-service hospital.”

 

In a prepared statement, NS-LIJ Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Battinelli said, “The North Shore-LIJ Health System will continue to maintain a full-service Emergency Department, inpatient beds and a range of other services at Glen Cove Hospital.”

 

Battinelli said the restructuring of the hospital puts “a greater emphasis on outpatient, community- and home-based services, in recognition of the changes occurring in the way health care is delivered and financed.”

 

Community members expressed their concern that the hospital has not included them in its discussion of future plans, and has led them to believe the hospital was abandoning its role of providing services to the “geographically isolated” region which serves 76,000 people, comprising populations in Bavyille, Sea Cliff, and other areas in addition to Glen Cove.

 

Jeff Kraut, senior vice president for strategy for NS-LIJ, cited declining inpatient surgery procedures at Glen Cove and an increase in ambulatory surgery to explain the hospital’s new focus on ambulatory surgery. Hospital executives assured the community that the facility would still maintain its emergency room and other facilities, including one or more operating rooms and a round-the-clock anesthesiologist. At the same time, Glen Cove’s orthopedic program has been moved to Syosset Hospital, which is also in the North

Shore-LIJ Health Care System; the first orthopedic surgery was performed there Feb. 3. 

 

Recognizing the large number of senior care facilities and nursing homes in the area served by Glen Cove Hospital, Battinelli said the hospital plans “to strengthen services in a way that will better meet the current and future needs of the community, especially our seniors, who will be able to access a broader array of care more quickly and conveniently.”

 

Dr. Ingo Holm-Andersen, who is the plaintiff in a legal case against the hospital’s plans to implement its conversion to a primarily ambulatory facility, urged the hospital administrators to make a solid commitment not to abandon Glen Cove.

 

“Remember the old saying,” he said. “'You don’t need a hospital until you need a hospital.’”

 

New York State Senator Carl Marcellino, attending the meeting as a member of the community, said the meeting should have been held many months earlier, instead of now—after changes have already been implemented and others are being discussed. “Plans still seem to be in flux,” he said, criticizing the timing of announcements and lack of involvement of the community in the restructuring of the hospital.

 

Some audience members expressed concern that not all Glen Cove Hospital employees who were terminated as part of the restructuring of the hospital had been “transitioned” to new jobs.

 

Salazzo and Susan Kwiatek, executive director of Glen Cove Hospital, assured the community that procedures were now in place to provide all excessed employees with employment in the North Shore Health Care system.


News

In order to meet the necessary budget requirements, the Glen Cove School District will reduce school staff members, starting in the 2014-15 school year. One administrative staff member and nine instructional staff members will be let go, according to Superintendent

Maria Rianna’s report at the Monday night school board meeting. Staff reductions will also be made to teaching assistants, school monitors, substitute teachers and custodial and maintenance workers. The total savings for the district is $1,227,669.

 

As of March 31, revenues for the district total $79,281,428. The revenues include the tax levy ($64,780,719),  P.I.L.O.T.s ($1,908,060), tax on consumer utility bills ($1,250,000)n use of reserves ($1,250,000), State Aid ($8,751,799), all other revenues ($635,850) and appropriation of unassigned fund balance ($750,000).

 

The total appropriations for the district are $80,509,097 and revenues are $79,281,428 with a budget gap of $1,227,669.

 It has been five years since a particularly heavy rainfall closed all the beaches in Glen Cove including Crescent Beach. As per Nassau County Department of Health standards, beaches are ordered closed after heavy rainfall because of storm water runoff that adversely affects bacteria levels at local beaches. Typically, bacteria levels subside within a day or so, allowing for the beaches to be reopened. This was not the way it went with one popular beach after the June 2009 rain storm.

 

“Unfortunately, this was not the case with Crescent Beach,” said Glen Cove Parks & Recreation Director, Darcy Belyea, at last Wednesday night’s public forum at Glen Cove City Hall. “Elevated levels of microbiological contamination continued to be found in the bathing water months after the heavy rain and recent samples show they are still elevated today.”

 

Belyea was one of a number of panelists at the public forum, which included Glen Cove Mayor Reginald Spinello, City Attorney Charles McQuair, Director of the Hempstead Harbor Protection Committee Eric Swenson and representatives from the Nassau County Department of Health. 


Sports

 

Glen Cove High School players, from left, Tajah Garner, Dejon Taylor, Manny Sican, and Ralik Jackson, after the Long Island Colts u18’s team vs. St. Anthony’s at Robert Finley Middle School last week. Touchdown ‘tries’ by Garner, Taylor and Sican.


The third- and fourth-grade Knights took to the road last weekend as they faced off against Jericho early Sunday morning, April 6.  Jericho’s teamwork and hustle brought down the Knights by a final score of 5 – 0.  The early game may have been a factor as the boys started to play better and more like a team as the game went on.  Once again, goalie Tyler Shea played outstanding in goal and was relieved by Christian Maiorano, who did just as well in the second half.  Andrew Guster played solid defense in the loss.


Calendar

Eggstravaganza - April 16

Live Music - April 16

Community Easter Egg Hunt - April 19


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com