South Nassau Communities Hospital's “state-of-the-art” modular unit arrived at the Long Beach Medical Center campus on Friday, paving the way for the opening of an urgent care center by July 1.
The 4,700-square-foot unit will be situated west of LBMC’s emergency department, which has remained closed since Hurricane Sandy, in the parking lot adjacent to the Komanoff Center for Geriatric & Rehabilitative Medicine, at 375 E. Bay Drive.
South Nassau officials say that the urgent care center — which is currently being installed and constructed — will be followed by the opening of a 24/7 free-standing emergency department that can accept ambulances. Officials explained that they are exploring the idea of possibly establishing that facility at LBMC’s closed emergency department, which underwent extensive renovations and was ready to reopen a year ago. It is also looking to convert the modular unit into a free-standing emergency unit, pending state approval.
“The plan here is that the modular unit will provide much needed healthcare services to the Long Beach community quickly, and that will give us the time to develop plans for a freestanding emergency room — and that may be in the main hospital,” said Bill Ulrich, South Nassau’s vice president of administration. “The modular unit wouldn’t take the place of an eventual constructed emergency department, but we will try to get 911-receiving capabilities for the modular unit as fast as the state will allow.”
The announcement comes after U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer said that the Federal Emergency Management Agency would release $138 million to South Nassau Communities Hospital following its acquisition of LBMC for $11.7 million last month.
However, the urgent care center will be funded through a $6.6 million state grant SNCH received last year. SNCH spokesman Damian Becker said that the estimated budget for the urgent care center is $3.36 million, and explained that the unit is being leased through a company called Modspace and is being delivered from Raleigh, N.C.