We’ve by now heard of the real heroics performed by HCA to get people out of Tulane Hospitals (and the city owned hospital next door). Yesterday Bob Herbert’s NY Times Op-Ed highlights a case I missed where another for-profit corporate parent Universal tried to help one of its hospitals — Methodist — and incredibly FEMA basically requisitioned all their equipment and supplies. None of them got to the hospital. Herbert writes:
Bruce Gilbert, Universal’s general counsel, told me yesterday, "Those supplies were in fact taken from us by FEMA, and we were unable to get them to the hospital. We then determined that it would be better to send our supplies, food and water to Lafayette [130 miles from New Orleans] and have our helicopters fly them from Lafayette to the hospital."
Significant relief began to reach the hospital on Thursday, and by Friday evening everyone had been removed from the ruined premises. They had endured the agonies of the damned, and for all practical purposes had been abandoned by government at all levels.
I can’t find any news story backing this up, other than confirmation from Universal that Methodist is indeed closed, but while Herbert may be a woolly liberal opposed to everything that Bush stands for, it’s unlikely that a for-profit hospital company is making this up just to upset the Administration.