HealthAlliance: Benedictine to stay open

HealthAlliance CEO David Lundquist. (Photo by Dan Barton)

Here’s the press release from HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley issued this afternoon announcing their intent to close Kingston Hospital:

HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley presented a preliminary recommendation to the New York State Department of Health (DOH) and the Office of Mental Health (OMH) today to use the Benedictine Hospital facility on Mary’s Avenue as a single, full-service, nonsectarian community hospital in Kingston, without limitations on reproductive services. HealthAlliance will be engaging in an ongoing dialogue with DOH and OMH on several important issues, including patient service continuation and access to capital for facilities upgrades, to accommodate the plan.

Cynthia Lowe, Chair of the HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley Board of Directors, said that state officials are supportive of the organization’s preliminary plan.

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“It is apparent from our meeting that all parties are aligned in our goal for a financially viable model that preserves quality healthcare services in Ulster County,” said Lowe.

The recommendation came after entering an accelerated planning period on May 4 to reduce expenses and improve efficiency while preserving the high quality of care offered to patients. Planning includes analyzing current and future community needs, financial modeling, evaluating facilities and calculating capital upgrade requirements.

David Lundquist, CEO & President of HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley, said input was taken from meetings with all HealthAlliance board entities, physician representatives, community members and employees.

“Our choice is responsive to the preferences of our physicians and the needs of the community,” said Lundquist. “We are working to strengthen our healthcare services and will provide more details as they are confirmed in the coming months.”

Lundquist said the organization plans to retain as many quality patient services as possible but will reduce the total number of licensed beds operated from the 300 currently shared between the Benedictine and Kingston Hospital campuses.

“We are proceeding with the utmost sense of urgency to define the future of HealthAlliance,” Lundquist said. “As our plans develop, we will initiate an in-depth review of the Mary’s Avenue facility and prepare a Certificate of Need submission to the New York State Department of Health.”

The Certificate of Need process governs the establishment, construction, renovation and major medical equipment acquisitions of the state’s healthcare facilities, and ensures that services are aligned with community needs. All submissions are reviewed by the Department of Health’s Public Health and Health Planning Council. To find out more, visit https://www.health.ny.gov/facilities/cons/.

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