Despite surviving the Great Depression and severe outbreaks of cholera and AIDS, St. Vincent's Hospital in Greenwich Village permanently closed its doors today after 160 years, shutting down the last Catholic hospital in New York City.
St. Vincent's Hospital closes after 160 years
Workers and onlookers gathered outside the hospital to mark closure of a hospital that treated scores of victims from the 9/11 terrorist attacks as the only Level 1 trauma center on the lower west side of Manhattan. The 511-bed St. Vincent's Hospital, founded in 1849 and serving as the flagship of St. Vincent's Catholic Medical Centers of New York, recorded $502 million in total revenue in 2009, but posted a $107 million net operating loss that year, according to bankruptcy filings. That year about 47% of the hospital's emergency room patients were uninsured or on Medicaid.
The beginning of the end came in 2000, when the corporate owners merged with several other hospitals and nursing home facilities, starting a financial deterioration that led to the system's bankruptcy in 2005, according to court records filed by Chief Restructuring Officer Mark Toney.
The eventual restructuring plan included more than $1 billion in outstanding unsecured liabilities. The system never righted itself and, unable to find a buyer, was forced to declare bankruptcy again and close permanently.
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