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More Specialty Health Services Needed at SUNY Downstate: Report

The interim report is part of SUNY’s community engagement process as it attempts to reorganize the central Brooklyn hospital.
SUNY Downstate Medical Center.

Preserving and expanding specialty medical care was a top priority for the community as the state tries to reorganize the State University of New York Downstate hospital, according to a report released Wednesday.

SUNY said they conducted a community engagement process through in-person meetings and a public survey with more than a thousand responses and hundreds of individual conversations, according to a news release.

The main findings of the Interim Community Engagement Report include preserving and expanding specialty care, while continuing to provide high-quality services to a diverse population. There is also an immediate community need for maternal-child health and primary care, according to the report.

Students and faculty wanted better access to educational resources and training opportunities, such as clerkships, residencies, and rotations. The academic community requested more research opportunities for students, including health equity research, noting that capital investments should be paired with investments in human capital. 

The central Brooklyn community feels the state's plan's to reorganize the hospital is akin to closing the medical center, which has led to many rallies and community meetings. 

“We are committed to a strong future for Downstate, which means we need to urgently address the crisis facing the hospital building’s infrastructure and its massive deficits,” said SUNY Chancellor John B. King, Jr. “We are fortunate that the State is proposing a historic $300 million capital investment in Downstate’s future, and through our community engagement process, SUNY has heard about the concerns, ideas, and aspirations of more than 1,000 people who care deeply about Downstate. These conversations are just the first step in shaping the next chapter of this vital institution.”