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Roslyn dad a 2-time winner for life-saving medical treatment

Adam Lilling, pictured here with daughters Ariel, 4,

Adam Lilling, pictured here with daughters Ariel, 4, and Hannah, 7, and wife Sara. Credit: Adam Lilling

Adam Lilling is a two-time winner when it comes to life-saving medical treament. 

The Roslyn father of two had pancreatic surgery at what is now Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park shortly after he was born on March 22, 1980.

Forty years to the day later. his life was once again in the hands of doctors when he was admitted to North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset with a severe case of coronavirus.

After he was successfully treated and discharged on March 28, Lilling ordered five pizzas and soda for the hospital staff to thank you but wanted to do more.

“I have a lot more living to do,” he said. “I’m really blessed to be out of the hospital and home with my family. Anything I can do to help them [the hospital], I will.”

He began fund raising for North Shore through his local social group, Roslyn Dads, and to date the team has raised more than $11,000. The money will go toward personal protective equipment, funds for health worker child care, mental health services and more.

The New Hyde Park-based Northwell system, which owns North Shore and Cohen's,  has launched community fundraising sites like Lilling’s to assist in the state’s largest hospital system’s pandemic response. Donations through the fund will also support efforts like clinical trials and expanding telemedicine services.

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As of Monday, the effort had raised nearly $690,000 for the hospital system which that day was treating 2,626 Covid-19 patients at its owned and operated 19 hospitals, including 11 on Long Island.

 “With the support of people in our communities, we can fulfill our mission to tackle the most difficult healthcare challenge of our time,” said Brian Lally, senior vice president and chief development officer at Northwell Health.

An accountant with the Port Washington-based family firm Lilling & Company, LLP, Lilling and his family have also raised more than $500,000 for the Lilling Family Neonatal Research Lab at the hospital system’s Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research division.

Lilling is now home and recovered although he still gets winded easily. He credited his wife Sara, an attorney, for bearing the responsibilities at home and taking care of Hannah, 7, and Ariel, 4, while he was in quarantine.

“I didn’t get to hug my kids for weeks,” he said. “My wife would have been there with me if it was not something ultra-contagious.”

While hospitalized Lilling participated in a Regeneron Pharmaceutical clinical trial through the Feinstein Institutes testing the effectiveness of sarilumab, usually prescribed for rheumatoid arthritis. He suspects he received the drug rather than a placebo and thinks it helped shorten his recovery time.

“The people in the hospital were fantastic,” he said. “They did an excellent job of coming up with the right diagnosis, the right drugs, the right care for me.”

With David Reich-Hale

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