N.Y. councilmen aim to help obese patients

May 12, 2005 at 3:31 PM
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NEW YORK, May 12 (UPI) -- New York City is considering legislation to require some city hospitals and ambulances to have equipment sturdy enough to handle people who are obese.

City Councilman James Sanders Jr. said he co-sponsored a pair of bills based on the experience two years ago of labor union official Mark Rosenthal, who encountered a hospital system that could not accommodate his 450 pounds.

The measures would require that one city-run hospital in each New York borough have specialized equipment to handle people who weigh more than 400 pounds and two ambulances that can transport people weighing more than 500 pounds.

The city's Health and Hospitals Corp. said all 11 hospitals it operates "have equipment available to treat patients of all sizes, including the morbidly obese."

The legislation Sanders sponsored with City Councilwoman Christine Quinn would not affect private hospitals.

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