Only one hospital still remains closed in the wake of Hurricane Sandy — the second most costly hurricane in history which hit the East Coast in October 2012. The closing of the Long Beach hospital has come at the request of New York Health Department, which says the facility has been "bleeding money for years and should merge with its closest competitor if it wants to continue providing health services."

According to Associated Press reporting, residents of Long Beach continue to fight to keep the hotel in operation, collecting 11,000 signatures for a petition demanding a resolution. Although the next closest hospital is just 7 miles away, residents insist that it can take as long as 40 minutes to get there in heavy traffic.

The Long Beach Medical Center, a 162-bed facility located on a waterfront channel near the Atlantic Ocean, suffered heavy flooding damage in the October storm. The hospital's basement was inundated with seawater, destroying the building's boiler plant and morgue and forcing officials to move the pharmacy to the third floor. The building's sprinkler system had to be replaced because of concerns that saltwater might have compromised pipes.

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