Mount Sinai mulls sale of 120-year-old ‘Godfather’ hospital

Don Corleone narrowly escaped getting whacked in his hospital mattress — however the historic medical constructing the place it was staged may not be so fortunate.

The New York Eye and Ear Infirmary within the East Village, half of Mount Sinai Health System, is perhaps bought and demolished for a brand new constructing, frightened docs and workers members informed The Post.

The 1902 constructing at 218 Second Ave., between East thirteenth and 14th streets — which was  the setting for Al Pacino’s rescue of Marlon Brando in “The Godfather” —  is on the heart of a three-way drama involving medical care, historic preservation and a possible actual property windfall. (Pacino himself has really been a affected person there lately, insiders mentioned.)

Mount Sinai merged with the Infirmary’s former proprietor, Continuum Health, in 2013, and has exercised rising management of Eye and Ear ever since, sources mentioned.

In the curiosity of “streamlining” and decreasing prices,  Mount Sinai is step by step shifting surgical procedure, medical, ambulatory and different departments to places it has round Manhattan — a declare which Sinai didn’t dispute.

Some docs mentioned the stealthy course of will damage the “synergy” of having all of the features in a single spot and diminish affected person care.

'Godfather' scene with Marlon Brando and Al Pacino.
The constructing was the setting for Al Pacino’s rescue of Marlon Brando in “The Godfather.”
Courtesy Everett Collection

They worry that Mount Sinai will ultimately empty the outdated constructing and an adjoining one constructed within the Nineteen Sixties at 310 E. 14th St. to clear the way in which for a profitable sale to a developer.

One physician who didn’t need to be named mentioned, “Mount Sinai is going to close this building and make whatever they can on it.”

Aware that Mount Sinai’s plans endangered the constructing, Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation director Andrew Berman wrote to Mayor Eric Adams and Landmarks Preservation Commission chair Sarah Carroll final month to induce designating 218 Second Ave. as a metropolis landmark.

He was joined by State Sen. Brad Hoylman and Assembly member Harvey Shapiro. Landmarking would stop an proprietor from demolishing or altering the constructing with out LPC approval.

One physician who didn’t need to be named mentioned, ‘Mount Sinai is going to close this building and make whatever they can on it.’

The Infirmary buildings in danger take up about 35,000 sq. ft of land. The web site is zoned for residential growth with ground space of as much as six occasions the bottom space — which means a  new constructing may have as much as 210,000 sq. ft of ground space.

Based on a median of latest Manhattan gross sales of residential air space of $250-350 per sq. foot, the Infirmary-owned land may fetch within the neighborhood of $70 million, actual property sources mentioned.

In a confidential video seen by The Post, Mount Sinai officers mentioned the Infirmary stands to lose $27 million this year primarily based on first-quarter information.

One insider mentioned that Mount Sinai has been “surgically chopping up” the Infirmary for greater than a year. The quantity of working rooms is being diminished from 18 to 9.

The historic New York Eye and Ear Infirmary at 218 Second Ave., right, and adjacent building at 310 E. 14th St. in the East Village.
The historic New York Eye and Ear Infirmary at 218 Second Ave., proper, and adjoining constructing at 310 E. 14th St. within the East Village.
Stefan Jeremiah for New York Post

Dr. Douglas F. Buxton has practiced eye surgical procedure on the Infirmary since 1983. He mentioned, “They are effectively evicting me” by the top of 2024.

He lamented the “fragmenting” of  a “self-contained facility for eye diseases on one campus where all the subspecialties were in one building, which was unique.”

Mount Sinai declined to reply to questions on its plans for the Infirmary buildings and whether or not it could assist landmarking 218 Second Ave.,  a weathered however good-looking six-story structure of stone and brick the place Helen Keller delivered the dedication speech in 1902.

But in a latest video convention for senior workers, Infirmary president Dr. James Tsai mentioned relocations deliberate for Eye and Ear’s surgical procedure division, school follow, emergency room, analysis services and different items to Manhattan satellite tv for pc websites owned by Sinai. They embody  the Beth Israel campus on First Avenue at seventeenth Street, 1115 Broadway and 10 Union Square East.

“All this is being done very stealthily, a slow roll,” an insider mentioned. “They don’t want to draw attention to it. When you scatter all the functions, it isn’t really New York Eye and Ear any more.”  

Joseph Burkart, a former Infirmary board chairman who stays in shut contact with physicians there, mentioned that breaking apart the Infirmary “destroys what was a very important hospital for hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers.”

He mentioned that spreading the Infirmary’s items round city signifies that “people will no longer be coming to a hospital, but to a small facility [elsewhere] with a few doctors. The inter-departmental synergy that the Infirmary has always provided will be lost.”

Said one other presently working towards physician, “They have alienated people to make them leave. Some big surgeons have left. I think their goal is to weaken the institution  so they can say they have to close.”

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