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A02986 Summary:

BILL NOA02986
 
SAME ASNo Same As
 
SPONSORSimon (MS)
 
COSPNSRArroyo, Barron, Cook, Colton, Steck, Walker, Davila, Seawright, Abinanti, Ortiz, Carroll, D'Urso, Paulin
 
MLTSPNSRBarnwell, Blake
 
Add §2801-h, amd §2801-g, Pub Health L
 
Relates to the closure of hospitals; includes general hospitals or the surrender of an operating certificate.
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A02986 Memo:

NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY
MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION
submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
 
BILL NUMBER: A2986
 
SPONSOR: Simon (MS)
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public health law, in relation to the closure of hospitals   PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF THE BILL: To allow for greater community impact when hospital closures are threat- ened.   SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section 1 establishes the title as the "Local Input in Community Health- care (LICH) Act" Section 2 adds a new Section 2801-i of the public health law to give explicit authority for closure of hospitals to the Commissioner of the New York State Department of Health. It also requires the Commissioner to: Issue a report within 30 days of an application for closure, including: *The anticipated impact of closure on the surrounding communities' access to care, including the uninsured and underserved; *What measures DOH and others have taken or plan to take to lessen any negative impact; *Any other recommendations regarding access to health care services in the impacted communities; *Why the State cannot assume financial. responsibility for the hospital or identify an alternate operator. *Complete copies of the application for closure. Upon any decision to approve or reject an application for closure of a general hospital in a city of one million or more, respond to community input by: *Answering, in summary, comments received from community members and local elected officials *Explaining why significant alternatives were or were not incorporated into a final closure plan. *identifying any changes to the plan resulting from community concerns or suggestions. *Releasing a complete copy of the proposed closure decision, including plans for providing health services to the impacted communities Only approve the application if needs of the community and impacted stake- holders, including access to emergency medical care, can be adequately met. Section 2 also allows local elected officials and relevant agencies in cities of one million or more to respond to an application for closure. Section 3 amends subdivisions 1 and 2 of section 2801-g of the public health law, as added by chapter 541 of the laws of 2010, which requires the commissioner of the New York State Department of Health•to: Hold a community forum, giving community members and local elected officials the chance to raise questions, voice concerns, and offer alternatives, both in person and via written comment. Post a copy of the report related to the proposed closure at least ten days prior to such community forum. Produce a written report regarding: *The anticipated impact of closure on the surrounding communities' access to care, including the uninsured and underserved; *What measures DOH and others have taken or plan to take to lessen any negative impact; *Any other recommendations regarding access to health care services in the =impacted communities; *Explain options for transitional medical services to impacted communi- ties, including arrangements for continuity of care. Section 4 establishes the effective date.   JUSTIFICATION: The proposed closure of Long Island College Hospital, formerly operated by the State University of New York-Downstate, ended up in court for nearly two years, during which a court said that the current regulation governing hospital closures is "unconstitutionally vague." The court proceeding made clear that there was no process for determining the healthcare impact of the hospital's closure on Cobble Hill and surround- ing communities or Brooklyn. In addition, there was no role for real community input or transparency. Throughout the multi-year fight to save a full-service hospital in Cobble Hill, the community's needs were repeatedly .ignored. Current law only requires a community forum to be held after a hospital has already been closed and does not require the commissioner of the State Department of Health to consider the health care needs of the community, including emergency medical care or transitional care, as part of the commissioner's decision to approve a hospital closure. The LICH Act would allow the commissioner to only approve a hospital closure application if the needs of the community and impacted stake- holders, including access to emergency medical care, can be adequately met. And, under the proposal, the commissioner would not be allowed to close a hospital without a Significant and thorough community input process dictated by a statutorily imposed timeline.   PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New Bill   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: Minimal Fiscal Impact   EFFECTIVE DATE: immediately.
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