Things just got worse (or better?) for unhealthy people in Queens. Yesterday the New York State Health Department ordered the troubled Peninsula Hospital in Rockaway to stop admitting new patients, come up with a plan to transfer current patients out and to end all surgeries for at least the next 30 days.

The order came after a DOH inspection found that the hospital's clinical laboratory, which was approved last October, had "serious deficiencies" including "problems that failed to meet the accepted standards of care." And as "the availability of clinical laboratory services is essential to the provision of medical care to patients," Health Commissioner Nirav R. Shah ordered the place shut down. You can read the orders for summary action PDFs here and here.

This is just the latest in a series of problems for the hospital, which almost had to shut down last year because of financial problems. In a statement on the hospital's website spokeswoman Liz Sulik says

Late this afternoon, following an inspection of the Hospital Center’s clinical laboratory, by the New York State Department of Health, Peninsula Hospital Center was notified that its clinical laboratory services failed to meet acceptable standards. Accordingly, the hospital is fully complying with DOH Commissioner Shah’s directive and has stopped admitting new patients, has cancelled all surgeries and procedures, has and will continue to suspend any activities that depend on clinical laboratory services. Additionally, the Hospital Center’s Emergency Department is on diversion. The hospital has also developed a plan to transfer current inpatients to alternate facilities.

As the hospital complies with the DOH’s directive, it is expeditiously developing a plan to remedy the laboratory deficiencies and hopes to restore full services as soon as possible.