New York Times Covers NOLA Charity Hospital Months After NAC

Next American City’s Brentin Mock wrote about the controversy surrounding New Orleans Charity Hospital for our Summer 2008 issue (No. 19) months ago — now the story is making national news with a little help from the Times.

It’s nearly Thanksgiving — a time to be grateful. We do that at Next American City by thanking our writers who get on top of stories long before other national media do. I’m even more grateful that I think our writer, Brentin Mock (now a Metcalf Fellow on Environmental Reporting at the American Prospect), did a more thorough job of covering the controversy than New York Times.”>today’s piece in the New York Times.

The basic gist of the controversy is that New Orleans is building an enormous, expensive new hospital and bulldozing part of a neighborhood in order to do that. At the same time, the legendary NOLA institution, Charity Hospital, has been condemned even since Hurricane Katrina rather than retrofitted. While the new hospital will undoubtedly serve the wealthy better than Charity ever could, the poor will unlikely receive the same kind of care at the new hospital that they were offered at Charity (which was established to serve the indigent). Also, while the new hospital is being built, it seems that a number people, especially those who depended on mental health professionals, have not been able to receive good care in the interim.

During the summer, Ted, a commenter, disagreed with the angle of Brentin’s story. What’s your take on the situation?

Diana Lind is the former executive director and editor in chief of Next City.

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Tags: new orleansnext american city

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