From the Daily News:
Local leaders are eyeing a prescription that would keep an ailing Rockaway hospital in stable condition.
Two officials introduced a bill to reimburse St. John’s Episcopal Hospital — the only hospital left on the peninsula — the $4.3 million it spent sheltering, feeding and caring for thousands of Hurricane Sandy victims.
“They need all the help they can to get back on their feet,” said Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D-Rockaway Beach), who introduced the bill on Monday. “We’ll beg, borrow and steal to make sure the hospital stays open.”
State Sen. James Sanders (D-South Ozone Park) introduced the bill in the senate.
Goldfeder also sent a letter to Gov. Cuomo this week asking that the hospital receive a portion of the $1.2 billion the state sets aside for hospitals, nursing homes and other health care facilities across the state.
Rockaway counts about 170,000 year-round residents, Goldfeder said. Hundreds of thousands more flock to the peninsula’s beaches during the summer.
The 257-bed facility has seen an influx of new patients since Peninsula Hospital closed in 2012. To cut costs, St. John’s recently got rid of its detox center, outsourced some of its clinics and laid off several dozen employees.
During Sandy, the hospital was a beacon for residents.