Thousands of Boro Parkers Gather at ‘Save Maimonides’ Event
By: Yehuda Alter
Thousands of residents from the Boro Park community packed the Ateres Chaya halls, spilling out into the hallways, for a historic event in the history of the community.
The “Save Maimonides” group—a collection of activists from across the Boro Park community— has initiated an effort to bring change at Maimonides Hospital, an institution in the community for more than a century.
The group notes that the hospital was ranked 147/147 in patient satisfaction by impartial groups, they note that the hospital is losing millions of dollars, year over year, and they have documented a host of other issues at the hospital, which amounts to neglect of the patients and their caregivers. They claim—and nurses at the hospital have corroborated this—that there can sometimes be one nurse tending to 20 patients, when the maximum should be four.
The event was headlined by David Lichtenstein, CEO of the Lightstone Group, who has transformed a number of hospitals around the country.
Mendy Reiner, co-chair of the committee, and founder of the Renewal organization center which has facilitated hundreds of lifesaving kidney transplants, said, “our community does chessed better than anyone in the world. There is no reason that we should not have the best hospital in the world..”
Celebrated Law Professor, Alan Dershowitz, a child of Boro Park, spoke by video, in which he noted that during his childhood, Maimonides was considered a wonderful hospital where everyone wanted to be—and that our community must demand that it be brought back to that position of stature.
Finally, Rav Elozor Nissan Rubin, a noted Maggid shiur in Boro Park, spoke about the tradition of stellar healthcare in Torah and Halacha, the Gedolim who were physicians and championed top-notch medical care, and how we are all obligated to ensure—as a matter of halacha—to ensure that we and our loved ones have a hospital that we will deliver the best care.
Charting the purpose of ‘Save Maimonides,’ Mr. Reiner noted, “We have no desire to overtake the board of Maimonides, or to join it. We simply want it to be responsive to the needs of our community, and to work together to elevate the level of care.”
In response to this campaign, Maimonides launched a public relations campaign called “Maimotruth” in which it refutes many of the claims, and says that they do not give the full picture of the reality at the hospital.