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Congresswoman Clarke Urges Support for Public Hospitals

Brooklyn, N.Y. – Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke has asked the Department of Health and Human Services to approve New York State’s request for a Medicaid exemption that would allow for the reinvestment of cost savings into public hospitals at risk of closure.

The proposal was submitted to the federal government by Governor Cuomo on August 6, 2012, but has not yet been approved. Governor Cuomo and the New York Department of Health have determined that – with the Medicaid waiver – about $17 billion in cost savings are possible.

“We must invest in our hospitals, to protect access to comprehensive health care services. People here in Brooklyn are already concerned about the possibility that Interfaith Medical Center and Long Island College Hospital could be closed, leaving behind several hundred thousand people who depend on these institutions for primary care visits and emergency services,” said Congresswoman Clarke.

Congresswoman Clarke continued: “These hospitals are a critical part of the community we share in Brooklyn where thousands of people work to provide the highest quality of health care to a population that has in many instances been underserved, with only limited access to medical services. I will work with Governor Cuomo and Secretary Sebelius to expedite the consideration of this request.”

U.S. Representative Yvette D. Clarke is a member of the House Committee on Small Business, Ethics, and Homeland Security, where she is the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies. She represents many neighborhoods in central and southern Brooklyn, NY which include Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Gerritsen Beach, Madison, Midwood, parts of Park Slope and Flatlands, Prospect Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Sheepshead Bay, and Windsor Terrace.

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