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Brooklyn Hospital Center receives $9.2M from Feds for Emergency Dept. modernization

Schumer, Jeffries, Gillibrand make announcement on site

March 28, 2022 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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On Sunday morning in front of The Brooklyn Hospital Center’s Emergency Department, U.S. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-Brooklyn), Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) announced that they secured $9.2 million in funding for The Brooklyn Hospital Center (TBHC) in Downtown Brooklyn/Fort Greene through the recently-passed government funding law.

Serving more than 70,000 patients per year in its Emergency Department, TBHC is the oldest hospital in Brooklyn, having been established in 1845, and an independent, nonprofit, safety-net hospital that is neither government-owned nor part of a larger health system. Upwards of 90 percent of the hospital’s patients are people of color, and 80 percent are on Medicaid, Medicare or other government insurance. 

The federal money will fund TBHC’s Emergency Department Modernization project to construct new triage, exam and treatment rooms; additional space and flow for support services such as a radiology room, CT scan room, satellite pharmacy and discharge rooms; new waiting areas; a new entrance to the Emergency Department and quick registration areas.

U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer and U.S. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries hold a giant mock-up of a $9.2 million check in front of The Brooklyn Hospital Center’s Emergency Department, as U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and hospital medical professionals look on. Photo courtesy of U.S. Rep. Jeffries’ office

“The Brooklyn Hospital Center serves the least, the lost and the left behind, the poor, the sick and the afflicted, and do a phenomenal job. We’re so thankful for them and the health care heroes who are there for our community. I was proud to work with Senators Schumer and Gillibrand to deliver $9.2 million in federal funds for The Brooklyn Hospital Center for the Emergency Department Modernization Project to help them continue their vital work,” said Jeffries, who was born at the hospital.

“For century after century after century, this hospital has served Brooklyn exceptionally well. We especially saw this during the pandemic,” Jeffries said. “These first-rate professionals deserve a first-rate emergency room.”

Gary Terrinoni, president and CEO of The Brooklyn Hospital Center, speaks, flanked by Sen. Chuck Schumer, U.S. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand. Photo courtesy of U.S. Rep. Jeffries’ office

“We secured this vital federal funding in the omnibus bill so The Brooklyn Hospital Center can modernize its emergency department, which will improve health care access and efficiency for New Yorkers, and enable the incredible health care workers at this hospital to continue providing top-quality care,” said Schumer, who revealed that the hospital itself had originally just asked for $5 million. 

“That’s why I’m so proud to bring investments like this one to our communities in New York so our hospitals can better serve their communities, especially the underserved communities that the Brooklyn Hospital Center critically cares for,” Schumer added. 

“Brooklyn residents deserve access to a world-class health care system, and I am proud of the investments we are making to improve the services of The Brooklyn Hospital Center’s Emergency Department,” said Gillibrand, who Schumer called an honorary Brooklynite. “The pandemic tested the full capabilities of our health care system, and this funding will go a long way toward providing our most vulnerable communities access to the best, highest quality medical care.”

When Gillibrand said that the hospital was here during the Civil War and here during the construction of the Manhattan Bridge to treat workers who got “the bends,” Schumer jokes, “It also was here to help Brooklyn Tech students who were depressed after they flunked their exams.”

After the legislators spoke, Brooklyn Hospital Center President and CEO Gary Terrinoni and TBHC Chair of the Board Anne Elizabeth Fontaine, her self a nurse, addressed the crowd and thanked Gillibrand, Schumer and Jeffries.

TBHC has received several recent awards from HealthGrades, including America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Gastrointestinal Care Award (2022), Coronary Interventional Excellence Award (2022), Gastrointestinal Surgery Excellence Award (2022, 2021), Labor and Delivery Excellence Award (2021) and Stroke Care Excellence Award (2021), according to the hospital.

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