New medical pavilion possibly on the way for Long Beach

LONG BEACH, N.Y. (WABC) -- South Nassau Communities Hospital announced possible plans for a new medical pavilion in Long Beach to help restore health services to the barrier islands after Superstorm Sandy.

A description of a two-story, 30,000-square-foot medical pavilion was presented at the Long Beach Hotel on Long Island Wednesday morning.

The new building could include a dialysis center, radiology and medical imaging services and a same-day surgical center and family medicine. South Nassau Communities' website says that it is evaluating which services are most needed in the community.

"Those very high intensity services, a small hospital just cannot maintain financially," South Nassau Communities Hospital president and CEO Richard Murphy said. "I'd love to tell you otherwise but the fact is, a full-service facility on Long Beach is not going to have the demographics to support it."

The new construction would provide jobs, but starting the project is contingent upon state regulatory approval.

The project would be paid for largely with FEMA money, about $154 million. The former Long Beach Medical Center was closed as a result of damage from Superstorm Sandy.

The hospital is not expected to be completed until the end of 2016 or early 2017. Additionally, South Nassau Communities plans to revamp a temporary free-standing urgent care facility to receive 911 calls by July.

"A heart attack is one of those very specialized," Dr. Josh Kugler said. "We have the catheter labs up at south Nassau, and the catheter teams are really 24 /7."

Residents have been waiting for emergency care.

"I've been to the emergency room in the last year twice," Long Beach resident Bernard Ellenberg said. "I had to go to Oceanside (which is 20 minutes away)."

Planners are still awaiting more feedback at a hearing scheduled for April 13.
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