Mayor’s comment on Thursday public hearing on pending hospital sale


Mayor Dawn Zimmer is providing comment regarding tonight’s public hearing held by the State Health Planning Board (the Board) concerning the certificate of need application submitted to the Department of Health and Senior Services for the Transfer of Ownership of Hoboken University Medical Center to HUMC Holdco, under common ownership of the principals of Bayonne Medical Center.

“It was important that the Board heard directly from the citizens of Hoboken. There have been so many rumors about the needs of the community and the future of the hospital that this type of discussion was paramount. What Board members heard is that HUMC is essential to Hoboken. It has served our community for 150 years and without it, the future for healthcare in our City is bleak.”

“The Board also heard that the proposed sale of the hospital to the principal owners of Bayonne Medical Center is a huge opportunity for our City, an enormous win for all of our residents. The transaction will achieve two objectives few thought possible – it both saves the hospital and relieves the City of its potentially crippling $52 million loan guaranty. Our hospital cannot survive as a stand-alone community facility. The financial challenges are simply not sustainable.  If the sale doesn’t go through, our hospital will close. That is unacceptable.”

“Because public debate on this issue is important, the Board also heard from opponents of this transaction. Unfortunately for everyone, these groups voiced their opposition based on their own personal agendas and did not reflect the best interests of Hoboken’s residents. Their claim that HUMC can survive even if the transaction fails is just wrong. What they didn’t tell the Board is that it’s the citizens of Hoboken who will pay the price if these groups are successful in sabotaging the process.”

“The reality of HUMC ‘s financial situation is that there is simply no other choice. If the proposed sale does not succeed and the hospital is forced to close, the City will not only lose a vital institution, we will face the financially crippling reality of having to satisfy our $52 million obligation, as well as millions of additional costs associated with closing the hospital. This will likely result in higher taxes and reduced city services, damaging both the finances and quality of life of Hoboken’s residents.”

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