Greenwich Village's financially ailing hospital has a potential buyer, but West Side politicians are calling the proposed deal "unacceptable." A takeover by Continuum Health Partners would mean a significant scaling down of St. Vincent's facilities, especially its ER, and would turn the city's last Catholic general hospital into a meager outpatient facility. Depending on how Continuum was able to re-structure St. Vincent's giant debt—estimated at $700 million—it might even opt to sell the valuable property instead of taking on its thousands of patients.
Either way, the elected officials who oppose the deal—Christine Quinn, City Council speaker Scott Stringer, the Manhattan borough president, and Rep. Jerrold Nadler—say it will leave West Side residents bereft. “No one’s cavalier about the seriousness of St. Vincent’s financial house,” Quinn told the NY Times. “But what we need is to come together and find a solution that keeps it open, not one that basically abdicates the state’s responsibility to have full-service health care infrastructure for the West Side of Manhattan.” The cut-backs would take a special toll on homeless and uninsured patients, many of whom are routinely treated at St. Vincent's. For now St. Vincent's wants Continuum to at least meet it halfway: it's invited the health giant to make a proposal to preserve the landmark hospital in some form as “an alternative to financial liquidation.”