Long Island Jewish (LIJ) Forest Hills will be converting three underutilized beds in the hospital’s inpatient pediatric unit to beds for maternity patients. The Queens hospital has filed and received approval of a request with the New York State Department of Health (DOH) to pursue the $4 million maternity unit expansion project, which is expected to take about six months.
A closure plan for LIJ Forest Hills’ inpatient pediatric unit has also been filed with the state DOH, which would effectively allow the hospital to increase from 20 certified maternity beds to 23 – consisting of 11 single occupancy and six two-patient rooms – within the hospital’s obstetrics/gynecology department on the third floor.
The proposed plan will not disrupt the care that LIJ Forest Hills provides to its young patients, said Susan Browning, the hospital’s executive director. LIJ Forest Hills’ emergency department treats thousands of children under the age of 17 annually.
“We will continue to see pediatric patients in our emergency department,” said Ms. Browning. “Those children who need inpatient admission will go to Cohen Children’s Medical Center, as they do now.”
The hospital will continue to operate a nursery and a level 2 neonatal intensive care unit to care for babies born at greater than 32 weeks gestation or who are recovering from more serious conditions.
LIJ Forest Hills is a satellite campus of LIJ Medical Center in New Hyde Park where Cohen is also located. Parents and caregivers who wish to remain in the borough can choose to have pediatric inpatient care at Elmhurst Hospital or New York-Presbyterian/Queens in Flushing.
The $4 million cost of converting the pediatric space for maternity patients is part of an $8.2 million expansion of the OB/GYN and radiology departments.
About Long Island Jewish Forest Hills Hospital
Long Island Jewish Forest Hills Hospital, a 312-bed community hospital located in an ethnically diverse residential neighborhood in northern Queens, provides high-quality, compassionate healthcare with sensitivity and respect for the cultural needs of patients and their families. The hospital’s emergency department treats about 54,000 patients a year. LIJ Forest Hills offers general surgery, bloodless medicine and surgery, bariatric surgery, vascular surgery, thoracic surgery, orthopaedics, gynecology, advanced gastroenterology services, emergency care, lung health screening, on-site and through a vast array of affiliated medical staff. The hospital’s Women's New Life Center features labor-delivery-recovery suites for new moms and their families. The hospital’s Multispecialty Center in Rego Park offers affordable, high-quality outpatient healthcare.