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LICH Supporters Want More Say In Plan To Keep Facility Open

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TWC News: LICH Supporters Want More Say In Plan To Keep Facility Open
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Supporters of Long Island College Hospital want to have some direct influence on whether it stays open.

Public advocate and mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio along with six community based organizations were in court Friday to file what's called a motion to intervene.

That means they want the hospital to stay open and operational while they search for another health care group to take it over.

They also want to set up a trust that will protect LICH's records and assets while its fate is decided in the courts.

De Blasio says they're determined to see the process through.

"It's too early to declare a victory. The day we'll declare victory is when we have a long-term solution that's legally verifiable, and that we know what this community will have going forward. We're not there yet, but we've got a hell of a lot of momentum," De Blasio said.

"In this epic struggle, and this has been an epic struggle, with all that this community has done, we now have the upper hand," said City Councilman Stephen Levin.

SUNY Downstate, which runs the facility, has tried repeatedly to close LICH, claiming it's losing too much money.

The emergency room remains open and there are 14 patients currently receiving care, but ambulances are still being diverted.

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