Nearly four months after the 160-year-old Greenwich Village hospital closed its doors, talks to open an urgent care clinic at St. Vincent's have stalled over rent and...birth control. The NY Times spoke to officials "close to the negotiations" who said St. Vincent's officers "were asking for higher-than-market rent and for a huge financial penalty if the urgent-care center failed to move out immediately if a buyer were found for the hospital building" and were "trying to force the clinic to conform to Catholic doctrine by prohibiting it from prescribing birth-control drugs or providing counseling on birth-control methods."
North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System had been given a $9.4 million grant from the state to open the clinic; its spokesperson said they were still negotiating the lease. City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, whose district was once served by the hospital, asked State Health Commissioner Richard Daines to intervene, "The absence of these health services will prove to be quite literally a matter of life and death for many who work and live on Manhattan's West Side and lower Manhattan." A spokesperson for Daines said, "Christine Quinn doesn’t know what she’s talking about. The state health department has been in constant contact with all the stakeholders... Anything that has to do with the property of St. Vincent’s must be worked out through the bankruptcy court."