Written by Jill Nossa Saturday, 14 September 2013 00:00
A crowd of about 500 people gathered at the second rally to save the Glen Cove Hospital on Saturday, Aug. 31, a more organized and informative event than the first. Residents waved signs urging the North Shore Health System to “Save
Our Hospital” while local politicians, hospital employees and residents with personal stories to share took to the microphone.
Speaking on a stage set up behind the Glen Cove Public Library, Mayor Ralph Suozzi opened the rally with an explanation of intent.
“This gives us a chance to come together as a community,” he said. “The uncertainty has caused a lot of fear and anger.”
Officials from surrounding communities attended, including Mayor Doug Watson of Bayille. “We have to maintain the pressure,” he said. “This is a great health system and it’s not just about the neighborhood but the neighbors.”
Suozzi said he has had a lot of communication with hospital administrators and that he plans on having a one-on-one meeting with Michael Dowling to “figure out” how to make sure the health system remains strong in Glen Cove.
Noting that the petitions have received a total of 18,000 signatures to date, he urged residents to sign in order to get the attention of Governor Cuomo and Commissioner Nirav Shah from the state department of health.
He noted further that “no application for change has been filed to date” which means there is still time to potentially discuss any changes that will happen down the line.
“We want to make sure that any changes can be brought before the public for review,” Suozzi said.
Hospital donor Frank Feinberg said, at 90 years old, he has “never seen anything as amateur and wrong” as what he has witnessed in the past couple of months. “The actions of management are indescribable...losing the hospital will undoubtedly kill Glen Cove.” He asked residents to “do whatever you can to support the movement.”
Mayor Suozzi said that the talks seemed to be making a difference so far.
“We are in the room because of your voices and your signatures,” Suozzi said.
While a lot of residents have expressed emotional ties to the hospital, Suozzi stressed that in order to really make an impact, detailing cases of how much the area needs this hospital will likely have a greater impact on any final decisions.
The Hosey family of Glen Cove shared a story about their son, Sean, who is now 14. When he was 8 years old, he slipped and fell through a glass door at their home. Sean’s mother, Melinda, said they arrived at Glen Cove Hospital “within minutes” and Sean, being “desperately in need of blood” underwent 10 hours of surgery.
“We had a short window of time...things could have been very different.”
Dr. Gerard Vitalie said, “Sean is living proof of why we need this hospital...it is not just the doctors, the nurses, the ancillary staff, but the community needs it as well.”
Dr. Eric Hochberg, who said he has been at Glen Cove Hospital for 30 years and started the same year the NS-LIJ health system began, noted that the health system began in Glen Cove and said that the hospital is financially doing well.
He expressed concern at the distance between Glen Cove and other hospitals and speculated that down the road, they may even decide the ER is not worth the cost.
“If the ER closes, who will be there to save the next Sean Hosey?”
“We want a public process as this goes forward,” said Tom Suozzi, former Nassau County Executive and current candidate. “It’s important that we stay involved.”
“Nothing yet has been decided by New York State,” said Assemblyman Charles Lavine. He noted, “We are not going to war with the North Shore Health System” but did stress the importance the hospital has on the community from a financial stand point. He commented on the strength of community and said it is “remarkable” to have such a strong turnout on a hot, muggy holiday weekend.
Legislator Delia DeRiggi-Whitton said a big reason she bought her home in Glen Cove was because of its proximity to the hospital, since one of her daughters is diabetic.
Dave Gugerty, Democratic candidate for the Nassau County Legislature in the 18th district, also mentioned the importance of keeping the hospital open in a full capacity to service the community of the North Shore. “Put paper to pen...you wouldn’t believe the power that has..Let’s get this done.”
Hospital pharmacist Joseph Simoneschi said, “The changes made in the past always made sense. The current transition does not make sense.” He said he has patients from surrounding communities that travel to Glen Cove. “The patient comes first...continue to rally.”
Stressing the impact traveling to hospitals in Syosset, Manhasset or elsewhere would have on patients and their relatives, Myrta Adamczak said, “What about the environment and gas consumption? The baby boomers are being attacked because our parents need us. The elderly are being attacked...what good is a hospital if we can’t get to it?”
“We are having ongoing discussions with Mayor Suozzi and other elected officials, community leaders and local physicians to get their input on ambulatory care and home-based services needed in the community,” said Terry Lynam, a spokesman for the NS-LIJ system. “Those conversations will continue in the weeks and months ahead. The most important thing people need to understand is that Glen Cove Hospital is not closing -- it’s just evolving to meet community needs.”
Friday, 01 August 2014 00:00
The installation of a cell phone antenna in the steeple of the Community Methodist Church of East Norwich has outraged parents, causing them to seek alternative preschool options for their children and resulting in the closing of the nursery school held at the church. The decision to close the school was announced last week, and the school shut its doors on the summer camp on Tuesday.
“We knew this might be coming, since the numbers were so low, but we didn’t know the summer camp would close so soon,” says Carolyn Wilson, who has been teaching at the Wesley United Method Church Nursery School for 35 years.
Thursday, 31 July 2014 10:22
History will be made on Friday as Nassau Country Club opens its grounds for the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship, playing host to the tournament which was last played on its greens 100 years ago. The club has been planning for the tournament for the past eight years or so, when the club’s president and mayor of Mill Neck, Peter Quick, says they first discussed having it return to Nassau for the 100 year anniversary. The tournament, conducted by the United States Golf Association (USGA), will have 156 women from all over the world competing for the Robert Cox Trophy and the title of national champion, including twin sisters Jennifer and Kristin Coleman, whose grandfather is a member of the club.
For the Coleman sisters, 21, of Rolling Hills Estates, CA, the tournament will almost be like a homecoming: they began playing golf at age 5, and have played Nassau Country Club a number of times over the years while visiting their grandfather, Daniel Coleman, who lives in Glen Cove.
Thursday, 31 July 2014 10:27
The Long Island Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (LICADD) is holding its 34th Annual R. Brinkley Smithers Golf Invitational, a charity tournament, on Monday, Sept. 22, at The Creek and Piping Rock Clubs in Locust Valley.
This year, LICADD will have Kristin Thorne, Emmy Award Winning WABC-TV news reporter and personality joining them as Emcee and Auctioneer. The live auction boasts playing opportunities at some of the country’s top golf courses, along with dozens of silent auction and raffle prizes to please the most discriminating of tastes.
Thursday, 31 July 2014 10:28
Everyone who enjoys running or swimming or both is invited to join in the fun for the 3rd annual “Summer’s Not Done Aqua Run” on Sunday, Sept. 14 at the Town of Oyster Bay’s TOBAY Beach in Massapequa.
UJA-Federation of New York and the Greater Long Island Running Club will be co-hosting the event, which will consist of an 800-Meter Swim in South Oyster Bay followed by a three-mile run through the TOBAY Beach Bird and Game Preserve. You can compete as an individual or as a two-person relay team. New this year – there is also a 3 Mile “Run Only.”