Long Island College Hospital can now officially be taken off life support.
The deal to merge hobbled LICH with academic powerhouse SUNY Downstate Medical Center became finalized on Tuesday, as hospital officials and local pols cheered the new era at the newly named institution, the University Hospital of Brooklyn at Long Island College Hospital.
During a brief ceremony, LICH Executive Director Dominick Stanzione, who will continue at the post for the new institution, handed a giant yellow key to Downstate President Dr. John LaRosa, who called the merger “a win-win.”
New signs have already been installed outside the hospital, located on Hicks Street off Atlantic Avenue, which as recently as February faced imminent closure if it did not receive $62 million in grant money to offset its staggering $170 million of debt.
The cash-poor hospital was struggling with metasticing debt for years, selling off properties in 2007, and cutting jobs. At one time, it considered shuttering its maternity, dentistry and pediatrics divisions.