The New York State Department of Health never approved a proposal by Garnet Health to close its Coronary Care Unit in Harris, an official told The SullivanTimes today.
“As Garnet Catskill is the only hospital providing coronary care services in the county, the Department of Health has received comments from the community and elected officials expressing their concerns about the closure of Garnet’s Coronary Care Unit," said deputy communications director Jeffrey Hammond. "Therefore, the Department of Health did not approve Garnet’s proposal to close its Coronary Care Unit, and the hospital needs to actively work with the community and its elected officials to reach a resolution.”
The future of the hospital was the focus of a heated discussion this morning at a meeting of the County Legislature's Health and Human Services Committee.
At that meeting, Legislature Chair Rob Doherty stated that the DOH had imposed a "gag order" that prevents public officials from speaking about Garnet's future.
However, another high-level source who works in the DOH who did not want to be identified said "there is no gag order" adding that the agency "received a request from the facility to close a service. We reviewed it and made our decision. "