BROOKLYN - City officials announced Monday that ambulances from Victory Memorial Hospital will be taken off the 911 route.

Victory's ambulances will now be used by the Fire Department of New York for calls in Bay Ridge. Hospital supporters said the move strikes a serious blow to an emergency room already struggling to stay open. They said activity at the emergency room, which will lose its state certification in 2008, would decrease as a result of the 911 route decision.

Despite the change, the city said patients will still be brought to Victory Memorial Hospital if it is the nearest option.

Elected officials added they are looking into ways to keep Victory's emergency room after it loses state certification, possibly as an extension of a different hospital.