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Deal reached in future of LICH

People march over the Brooklyn Bridge during a

People march over the Brooklyn Bridge during a July 24, 2013 protest against the proposed plan by SUNY Downstate officials to shut down Brooklyn's Long Island College Hospital. Gov. Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio reached a deal on February 20, 2014 for a new healthcare provider to take over the hospital. Photo Credit: EPA / JUSTIN LANE

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio Thursday announced a settlement over Long Island College Hospital that will allow a new health care provider to take over the money-losing facility.

SUNY wanted to cut loose the Cobble Hill hospital, run by SUNY Downstate Medical Center. A state Supreme Court judge, however, had barred SUNY from going forward with plans to close LICH. SUNY reopened the process last month to proposals that included residential developments.

The settlement of a year-long lawsuit with community groups, elected officials, unions and doctors, would reopen the door for new proposals that would provide a "long-term, sustainable health care facility in place for the residents of Brooklyn," Cuomo said in a statement.

De Blasio, who was arrested as a candidate for mayor last year during a protest over LICH's closure, said in a statement the settlement "finally puts people's health first."

"Protecting continuity of care and ensuring the healthcare needs of this community are met will now be the yardstick by which proposals for the future of LICH are measured," de Blasio said.

The deal, which still needs approval from the judge overseeing the case, state Supreme Court Justice Johnny Lee Baynes, will let SUNY leave LICH operations by May and allow elected officials and community groups to be a part of the search for a new health care provider.

Details of the request-for-proposal process will be announced Friday afternoon, Jim Walden, an attorney representing the community groups, told amNewYork.

"We're really pleased that, when the details are released, it'll be quite clear that the quality and extent of the medical services are the No. 1 No. 2 and No 3 factors for how these proposals are going to be rated by the committee," Walden said.


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