Officials, community members rally against pending 2024 closure of Beth Israel Hospital

Beth Israel Hospital is set to close in the summer of 2024.

Ashley Mastronardi

Dec 14, 2023, 11:08 PM

Updated 216 days ago


Beth Israel Hospital is set to close in the summer of 2024. Local officials and community members rallied today against the closure. 
It seemed everyone had a memory to share about Beth Israel. “Some people know my daughter was born at Beth Israel Hospital,” Assembly Member Harvey Epstein told the crowd. 
“I met the love of my life at this hospital,” another speaker shared. Officials say those warm memories will turn cold when the hospital shuts down this summer. But Manhattan Council Member Carlina Rivera says key services in the hospital have already been taken away.
“You’ll have people who come here for services, some will be an emergency and to be told to go from one place to another - just in that transit can really jeopardize someone’s life,” she told News 12 New York after the rally. 
With the closure of Beth Israel, officials say there will be just one hospital south of 23rd Street, an area with a population of 400,000. “Atlanta has a population of 400,000, there are dozens of hospitals inside Atlanta city limits,” Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine told the crowd. 
According to the New York City Department of Health, residents below 14th Street only have 0.81 hospital beds per 1,000 people - a very low rate they say will deteriorate further with the closing of the hospital. 
Mount Sinai Beth Israel told News 12 New York that the hospital has lost $1 billion and that keeping it open puts their entire system at risk.  
“What you are saying is the most important thing is not health care, it’s profit. And I found that every time we put profit over a human right or something somebody needs, we run into problems,” Public Advocate Jumaane Williams said.
Mount Sinai Beth Israel acknowledged it has already removed some services in a statement: “Since we announced the closure, the finances and staffing at MSBI have continued to deteriorate which have forced us to begin moving some services out of MSBI in order to preserve the safety of our patients. We have an obligation to our patients, and we cannot - and we will not - jeopardize the safety and quality of care simply because some don’t like the reality that we face.”
Not liking the reality is an understatement for this crowd.
“If we have to go and sit in, they’re not taking this hospital away,” Assembly Member Deborah Glick shouted.
Mount Sinai Beth Israel also says it knows that not everyone will agree with its decision, but that it simply has run out of options. 

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