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The Revolutionaries Who Rescued a Hospital

By Amanda Aronczyk

WNYC, June 3, 2014

NYAM President Dr. Jo Ivey Boufford was interviewed by WNYC for a segment addressing hospitals, health care, and health outcome improvements--or lack thereof--in the Bronx since the infamous Young Lords takeover of Lincoln Hospital in the 1970s. Entitled “The Revolutionaries Who Rescued a Hospital,” this segment is the first in a five-part series entitled “RX for the Bronx." Dr. Boufford crystalizes the importance of public health interventions in keeping community members healthy and out of the hospital.

In 1970, Lincoln Hospital in the South Bronx was one of the worst in the city. The building was falling apart. Children were getting lead poisoning while hospitalized there. There were rats in the emergency room.

"I mean, there was a joke in the neighborhood," said CBS reporter Pablo Guzman, "that if you got stabbed on this side of the street, crawl over to the other side so the ambulance wouldn't take you to Lincoln."

But then came the revolutionaries.

The Young Lords, a radical Puerto Rican activist group similar to the Black Panthers, decided to take it over one day. Guzman was among them.

And that day changed everything.

Listen to the segment

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