Updated 02/07/2013 06:12 PM
HealthAlliance moves forward with hospital consolidation plan in Kingston
The HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley is moving forward with its consolidation plan to close Kingston Hospital and operate under a single campus alternative at Benedictine Hospital. YNN's Alexandra Weishaupt has details on the latest developments.
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KINGSTON, N.Y. -- It’s the latest in the hospital merger plan in Kingston. The Benedictine Sisters have agreed to give up their more than 100 year mission at Benedictine Hospital on Mary's Avenue. They'll be handing the campus over to the HealthAlliance and the Catholic denomination will be dropped. It’s a vital step in completing the consolidation.
“Despite the fact that they’re not crazy about the idea, they know for the good of the community and for the community to continue to receive the care it deserves that this step is necessary,” said HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley President and CEO David Lundquist.
Because of this, the names of both hospitals will change to HealthAlliance Hospital: Mary’s Avenue Campus and Broadway Campus. A firm has also been chosen to assess current infrastructure and make renovation recommendations at the Mary's Avenue Campus.
“The major change is the emergency room. We no longer have an emergency room at the Mary’s Avenue campus and we have to build one in order to consolidate services there,” said HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley Chairwoman Cynthia Lowe.
Officials wouldn’t comment on costs, but say their financing for upgrades will come from state, federal and private sectors.
Hospital officials add that until those renovations are completed, both the Broadway campus and the Mary’s Avenue campus will remain open. They say it will take more than a year before Kingston Hospital officially closes.
“What we are now working through is a total community event, so the boards have been working diligently to work out the details and work closely with the sisters and as a result I think we’ve made tremendous progress in our ability to finish,” said Lundquist.
As for the Benedictine Sisters, Cardinal Timothy Dolan has requested they move out of their convent on Benedictine’s campus to a residential area in Kingston. They will, however, continue to provide pastoral care services to the community.