As Downtown Brooklyn continues to experience tremendous growth and transformation, the leadership of The Brooklyn Hospital Center (TBHC) hosted a “Building Brooklyn’s Fu-ture” breakfast briefing with local elected officials to discuss the future of the hospital. The hospital’s leaders outlined a master plan, which will enable it to continue its more than 170-year history of providing Brooklyn families with quality healthcare in their neighborhood.
“This is a critical time for The Brooklyn Hospital Center,” CEO Gary Terri-noni explained to a panel that included New York state Assemblymembers Joseph Lentol, Walter T. Mosley and Jo Anne Simon, as well as New York City Councilmember Laurie Cumbo and noted screenwriter David Henry Hwang, who had been a patient at TBHC.
The hospital is seeking funds to modernize its emergency department and expand outpatient health centers to meet the demands of a growing population. The hospital is the sole and essential safety net provider of inpatient and outpatient health care for approximately 1 million residents living in Downtown Brooklyn and the surrounding neighborhoods. Many of these communities are significantly affected by poverty and poor health status.
The delivery of health care in New York state and across the country is changing, with more care delivered in outpatient, community-based settings. To address this changing paradigm, in 2016, New York state author-ized $165 million to be spent on the transformation of health care facilities across New York state, through the Health Care Facility Trans-formation Program to sup-port key capital projects.
In September, TBHC submitted a request for a $36 million grant from the program to support its modernization plans. “To continue our mission, we are request-ing the critical funding needed to serve Brooklyn’s families,” said Terrinoni.
The grant request could not be more timely, as the New York State Department of Health is faced with the daunting challenge of how to help struggling Brooklyn hospitals. Separately, the state authorized $700 million to be spent on the transformation of health care facilities in Brooklyn focused on four hospitals — Brookdale, Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center, Interfaith Medical Center and Wyckoff Heights.
Northwell Ventures, which is affiliated with Northwell Health, recently released a report that includes a rescue plan for the four dis-tressed community hospitals to merge into one regional health system. It shows that the four hospitals will require $310 million in operating subsidies from the state in Fiscal Year 2017, and will have combined losses of $405 million by Fiscal Year 2021.