Superstorm Sandy kept a lot of us along the East Coast in its thrall last night, but it was an especially harrowing night for many people in New York City-area hospitals. Late in the night NYU Langone Medical Center lost its backup generator and had to evacuate some 215 patients – including about 20 newborn babies, four with breathing tubes! An estimated 45 of the patients were critical care patients.
Starting around 11 p.m. last night a caravan of ambulances lined up outside the hospital to transport patients to other hospitals in the area — one by one. Patients were supported by battery-operated pumps and monitors. Via Twitter I heard that nurses were carrying newborns down nine flights of stairs.
Many patients were too sick to walk down the narrow staircase to the lobby. They were painstakingly carried on plastic sleds — one by one — by teams ofThe intensive care unit was already evacuated when I arrived. Lit only by my flashlight, filled with crumpled blankets and other evidence of a hasty retreat, it appeared eerie to me – like a scene in a movie where a cup of still-warm-coffee tells the detective that sofour to five people from as high up as the 17th floor.mebody had been a room only minutes before. But this was undeniably real life and the clock was ticking as the team of workers raced to evacuate the patients.
Image via tamakisono