The Biden administration plans to close two of the Veterans Administration hospitals in New York City — in Brooklyn and Manhattan, The Post has learned.
The VA would close those two hospitals and contract with private medical providers as part of a “strategic collaboration” to treat vets.
The plan sparked immediate rebuke from Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R-Staten Island).
“Me and the veterans I represent are mad as hell, and we will not allow the Biden administration to close these facilities,” Malliotakis told The Post.
The Brooklyn VA hospital is located at 800 Poly Place in Bay Ridge — part of Malliotakis’ district — and the Manhattan facility is at 423 E. 23rd St.
A third VA medical center is located in The Bronx. It is not affected by the proposed overhaul.
The plan would also reduce services at the Staten Island VA clinic at 1150 South Avenue and consolidate its services with the “New Jersey market,” according to the VA plan.
The VA proposal, in dry language, says it would be “discontinuing” services at the “Brooklyn campus” and instead establish a strategic collaboration with another provider to deliver inpatient medical and surgical and emergency department services.
The plan would also close the Manhattan VA hospital and develop a new “urgent care center” with another provider.
A research program at the Brooklyn VA hospital would be relocated to Manhattan under the plan.
“This is unacceptable,” Malliotakis fumed in a March 8 letter sent to VA Secretary Denis McDonough.
She complained the privatization and consolidation plan would “cripple” services at the Staten Island veterans’ clinic and force vets to go to New Jersey for other than mental health care.
“That’s no way to treat some of the 138,000 vets in the New York City area who’ve fought for the US,” she said.
Malliotakis urged McDonough to pull the plug on the plan so that “New York veterans who fought for our great nation do not have to travel out of state to receive the needed treatment that they are entitled to.”
It’s not the first time the Department of Veterans has moved to shutter and transfer services.
In 2018, the Bay Ridge facility’s ear, nose and throat clinic was temporarily closed, triggering concerns that the entire campus would shut down.
The Asset Infrastructure Review Commission is required under the law to consider changes to the VA medical system and care.
In its presentation, the VA emphasized the recommendations are not a fait accompli and hearings and meetings will be held with veterans and local workers.
“In the near term the recommendations will have no major impact. Any potential changes to our infrastructure are years away — and in some cases more than ten years away,” the VA said.