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South Nassau Plans to Upgrade Urgent Care Center to Off-Campus Emergency Department in Long Beach by July

Posted: Feb. 25, 2015

South Nassau Communities Hospital’s president and CEO, Richard J. Murphy, announced today that South Nassau will submit a Certificate of Need (CON) to the New York State Department of Health in March to seek approval to upgrade the South Nassau Urgent Care Center in Long Beach to an off-campus, hospital-based Emergency Services Department that will be able to receive ambulances via the 911 network.

Assuming timely review and approval of South Nassau’s CON application, the hospital’s goal is to have the free-standing emergency services department fully operational by July 1st, 2015. South Nassau estimates it will cost $4.5 million to upgrade the existing Long Beach Urgent Care Center to an off-campus Emergency Department. The new $4.5 million is in addition to the $5 million South Nassau has already invested to establish the Urgent Care Center, which was opened last July.

In order to meet state requirements for certification as an off-campus Emergency Department, the Long Beach Urgent Care Center will need significant upgrades including (but not limited to) an emergency generator, wider corridors and a new ventilation system.

“From the beginning of this process nearly two years ago, South Nassau has been clear in its intention to help restore needed medical services to the barrier island,” said Mr. Murphy. “This is an important next step in building a patient-centered, high-quality healthcare delivery system that provides vital healthcare services to the residents of Long Beach and surrounding communities.” Elected officials representing Long Beach applauded South Nassau’s effort to establish an off-campus Emergency Department at the Urgent Care Center on the barrier island.

“Today's announcement signifies an important next step in providing an ambulance-receiving emergency department to residents of Long Beach and the barrier island," said Senate Majority Leader Dean G. Skelos. "I want to thank South Nassau for their commitment to my constituents and I look forward to continuing to work with all parties as this project moves forward and as a more comprehensive, long term plan for Long Beach is developed.”

The off-campus Emergency Department in Long Beach will be staffed by certified emergency nurses and physicians board-certified in emergency medicine. As per existing Department of Health protocol, all acute strokes, heart attacks and trauma patients will be seen at the appropriate state-designated hospital. Any patient who requires hospital admission or advanced levels of treatment will be transferred from the off-campus Emergency Department in Long Beach to the South Nassau campus in Oceanside, or a hospital of their choosing. South Nassau, which services some 900,000 residents of the South Shore from Queens to Suffolk County, is a Level II trauma center and advanced cardiac center

More than 1,555 patients have been treated at South Nassau’s Urgent Care Center, which opened in July of 2014. The center provides hospital grade treatment and triage by board-certified emergency service trained physicians for a wide array of urgent medical conditions as well as ambulatory care with subspecialty backup supported through an integrated information technology system connecting the center to South Nassau’s main campus in Oceanside. The facility, located at 325 East Bay Drive (just west of the Komanoff Center for Geriatric and Rehabilitative Medicine), houses 10 private examination rooms, two procedure rooms, radiology and CT imaging and laboratory suites.

“The upgrade of the Urgent Care Center will allow us to continue our mission of providing for the health care needs of residents and visitors on the barrier island,” said Dr. Joshua Kugler, South Nassau’s Director of Emergency Services and the Chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine. “We are already an integral part of the health care community in Long Beach and this initiative will move us forward.”

The urgent care center combines with the Family Medicine Center at Long Beach (which was established in May of 2014 by South Nassau), to provide residents of Long Beach and surrounding communities a continuum of hospital-grade urgent care and family medicine. Family Medicine Center at Long Beach (located at 761 Franklin Blvd.) is an extension of South Nassau’s Family Medicine Center located on Merrick Rd. in Oceanside.

“South Nassau appreciates the support it has received on the effort to upgrade the Urgent Care Center to an off-campus Emergency Department from local elected officials and community leaders. We look forward to continuing a dialogue with the community about the future of the former Long Beach Medical Center campus,” said Murphy.

"Restoring services at Long Beach Hospital has been one of my top priorities,” said Assemblyman Todd Kaminsky. “Barrier Island residents have fought hard for improved hospital coverage since Hurricane Sandy--so it is heartening that our efforts so far have led to this commitment by South Nassau. However, more must still be done to restore proper medical services to the island. Today I look forward to a safer summer in our community; tomorrow we will continue to work with South Nassau to ensure that it provides adequate healthcare coverage to local residents.”

“It has been a pleasure working with the administration of South Nassau Communities Hospital and I look forward to the ongoing rebuilding of medical services at the former Long Beach Medical Center,” said Nassau County Legislator Denise Ford. “This emergency room is a first positive step and will provide much needed care for the residents on the barrier island.”

"We are pleased that South Nassau has responded to the call of the City Council and the community, and committed to opening a 911-receiving emergency room this summer," said City Council Vice President Fran Adelson.

A public Information Day is being planned for March in Long Beach as an opportunity for residents of the barrier island to speak directly to South Nassau officials about plans for the former Long Beach Medical Center campus.

South Nassau is the only hospital on Long Island to win four major awards for quality in recent months, including for nursing excellence, patient safety and top rankings from U.S. News & World Report & from the Joint Commission.

Designated a Magnet® hospital by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), South Nassau® Communities Hospital is one of the region’s largest hospitals, with 455 beds, more than 900 physicians and 3,000 employees. Located in Oceanside, NY, the hospital is an acute-care, not-for-profit teaching hospital that provides state-of-the-art care in cardiac, oncologic, orthopedic, bariatric, pain management, maternity, mental health and emergency services. In addition to its extensive outpatient specialty centers, South Nassau provides emergency and elective angioplasty, and is the only hospital on Long Island with the Novalis Tx™ and Gamma Knife® radiosurgery technologies. South Nassau is a designated Stroke Center by the New York State Department of Health and Comprehensive Community Cancer Center by the American College of Surgeons and is an accredited center of the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Association and Quality Improvement Program. In addition, the hospital has been awarded the Joint Commission’s gold seal of approval as a Top Performer on Key Quality Measures, including heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia and surgical care; and disease-specific care for hip and joint replacement, wound care and end-stage renal disease. For more information, call Damian Becker in South Nassau Communities Hospital’s External Affairs Office, at (516) 377-5370.