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Light Rain,54°
Wednesday, October 22, 2014

LBMC officials work to reopen
(Page 2 of 4)
Photos by Penny Frondelli/Herald
Long Beach Medical Center CEO Doug Melzer expects a mid- to late-April reopening.

“Everything that was in the basement will no longer be maintained there,” Player said. “They’re reconfiguring that space [on the third floor], so you’re building new walls and doorways, and we’re almost finished reconfiguring that space. The pharmacy needs certain equipment, and that has to be figured into the rebuild as well.”

The hospital is currently working off temporary power in the main building, although electricity in the west wing — which houses the emergency department — has been restored. Player attributed the biggest delays to the challenges of obtaining sewage and fire pumps, which have been hard to come by since the storm.

“I think a few things threw us off — one thing was that certain equipment, like sewer ejector pumps and fire pumps, were difficult to find in the aftermath of the storm,” she said. “Those are essential for us to operate. [The Long Island Power Authority] also delayed us a bit. We’re trying to get permanent electrical power into the building … for example, our boiler system is temporarily right outside the building …”

Player noted that some services have been restored. More than 100 residents who were evacuated to 12 facilities across Nassau County returned to Komanoff on Jan. 28, and the hospital’s family care center, group practice, home care agency and counseling center have all reopened. LBMC’s Project Hope counselors are providing free support services to residents impacted by Sandy.

“Our family care center has opened, and that’s important for people because so many people have lost their jobs, and it offers primary care medicine at a reduced rate for someone who does not have health insurance,” Player said. “Our mental health counseling has relocated to Baldwin, and we’re helping people with transportation there.”

Longer turnaround times

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