If you read The New York Times, you might ask yourself, "What hospital closing crisis ?"
In the last week, doctors, nurses, medical staff, Brooklyn residents, advocates for improved healthcare access, and even politicians (!) have been staging almost daily demonstrations in an effort to apply political pressure on New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to save Long Island College Hospital (LICH).
Last Sunday, "Public Advocate and mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio rallied with nurses and healthcare workers outside the struggling Long Island College Hospital Sunday, calling on Gov. Cuomo to intervene to save the Cobble Hill facility and another Brooklyn hospital," reported Metro New York. On Monday, several hundred activists congregated outside Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office, demanding that the governor take state action to save LICH. On Wednesday, NYSNA ED Jill Furillo, RN ; President-Elect Judy Sheridan Gonzalez, RN ; Mr. de Blasio ; and about a dozen others were arrested in a trying to deliver a petition with approximately 7,000 signatures to SUNY officials in an effort to save LICH. On Thursday, Assemblywoman Joan Millman was among three people arrested at Brooklyn Bridge in another LICH protest.
But if you've been reading the "political coverage" on The New York Times, you would have only read one surly blog posting by Anemona Hartocollis (@anemonanyc), the hospital closing reporter. Ms. Hartocollis, who is normally asleep at the switch, or out shopping at for trendy shoes, wrote an article glamourising mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio for getting arrested on Wednesday's act of civil disobedience.
But Ms. Hartocollis's blog posting completely left out the growing community's concerns with the chicanery going on with Gov. Cuomo's deliberate attempts to shut down LICH.
But in all of the hospital closing articles or blog postings that Ms. Hartocollis has ever written, she's never managed to connect the dots with the pressure that the for-profit insurance industry and austerity cuts to healthcare being made by politicians are each having on the finances of New York City hospitals. Too bad Ms. Hartocollis shares the same lack of political depth in her reporting as Carolyn Ryan, the new politics editor, at The New York Times, has in her editing.
It might have been premature to think that Ms. Ryan had evolved from her identity politics support for her fellow lesbian mayoral candidate, Christine Quinn.