ASSEMBLYMAN MONTESANO CALLS ON FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSIONTO
INVESTIGATE CHANGES TO GLEN COVE HOSPITAL
August 29 -- On August 26th, Assemblyman Michael Montesano (R,I,C-Glen Head) sent a letter to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Bureau of Competition – Healthcare Services requesting that it investigate North Shore-LIJ’s planned changes to Glen Cove Hospital.
At the end of July, hospital administrators informed staff that inpatient and other medical services at the facility would be discontinued. More recently, an NS-LIJ spokesperson stated that not all beds would be decertified so that the hospital system could maintain greater flexibility. The emergency room and other ambulatory care services at Glen Cove will continue to operate.
In his letter to the FTC, Montesano expressed concern that these services, too, could possibly disappear as patients realize the limited access to specialists. “It won’t be long,” he wrote, “before surrounding communities figure out that there is no reason to go to Glen Cove Hospital if a cardiologists, orthopedist, general surgeon, etc. will not be available to see them for several hours and patients would need to be transported to another facility anyway. This will ultimately result in the complete closing of Glen Cove Hospital!”
The changes at the hospital, the Assemblyman argued, would not only affect the 1,200 employees of the hospital, but would also have a detrimental impact upon the more than 50,000 community members who rely on the essential services provided there.
Montesano dismissed NSLIJ’s contention that its decision to decertify beds was in part a result of changes brought on by implementation of provisions of the Affordable Care Act. He stated that the hospital “is being used as a Sacrificial Lamb to cover losses being incurred at its other less profitable facilities.”
In addition, Montesano maintained that with only seven hospitals in Nassau County that are independent of the North Shore-LIJ system, the medical care provider is moving closer to monopolizing hospital care in Nassau County. He wrote, “Let’s face it: thanks to North Shore LIJ, there is NO COMPETITION IN HEALTHCARE IN NASSAU COUNTY. . . . THEY OWN IT ALL AND CALL ALL THE SHOTS!” (Mr. Montesano's emphasis)
He continued, “While North Shore LIJ may currently provide sound medical services, it won’t be long before the quality of their services begins to suffer due to the overwhelming effects of consolidation. I am requesting that your office open an investigation into the mega-corporation and its anti-competition practices.”