RIVERHEAD, NY – Peconic Bay Medical Center (PBMC) has received approval from a state health advisory panel for two cardiac catheterization (cath) suites and the relocation of the hospital’s helipad, a major element of Northwell Health’s unique SkyHealth critical care helicopter program.
The hospital’s certificate of need application was approved Thursday by the New York State Public Health and Health Planning Council’s (PHHPC) Establishment and Project Review Committee. The committee’s actions require final approval from the PHHPC and State Health Commissioner Howard Zucker, MD.
The new cath laboratories would be housed in a $43 million Critical Care Tower that will be constructed on the hospital’s Riverhead campus, providing life-saving capabilities for residents of central and eastern Suffolk County. The application by PBMC was supported by the state Department of Health’s Cardiac Advisory Committee, an ad hoc group of specialists in cardiac surgery.
“In January when PBMC joined Northwell Health, we said that this was a new era in healthcare for the entire East End. Today we demonstrate this in the most concrete way with the approval of this extremely important and much-needed medical advance for our community,” said Andrew Mitchell, president and CEO of Peconic Bay Medical Center. “Given the distance our residents have had to travel for advanced cardiac treatment, and the fact that heart ailments require quick diagnosis and treatment, this facility will make a major difference in the quality of life here on the East End. I am thrilled with the council’s approval of our application and the immense support of Northwell Health. We look forward to starting our project as soon as possible.”
Cardiac cath labs are used to place stents in a patient’s heart to open blocked passageways and perform a range of other related life-saving procedures. PBMC’s cath labs will feature the most recent advances in catheterization technology.
“Time and technology are the two most important factors in saving the lives of heart attack victims,” said Stanley Katz, MD, chair of cardiology and chief of interventional cardiology at PBMC, who was instrumental in the planning and design of the new cath labs. “We have seen great advances in cardiac care in just the last few years and we are thrilled to be able to bring that technology to the residents of the East End.”
Testifying at a November 17th hearing hosted by the Public Health Council in Albany, Steven Lederman, MD, an interventional cardiologist with Eastern Suffolk Cardiology, a new member of Northwell Health Physician Partners, advocated strongly that PBMC is the optimal location for a cath lab. “I have served patients who live on the East End of Long Island for more than 17 years, having done more than 1,000 interventional cardiac procedures during that time, and I am in strong support of a cardiac cath lab at Peconic Bay Medical Center,” Dr. Lederman said. “The geographic location of the hospital is the ideal position to be able to serve both the North and South Fork of Long Island.”
Construction is expected to begin in early January on PBMC’s proposed 17,850-square-foot Critical Care Tower that will house the new cath labs. The first floor will enable expansion of the hospital’s emergency department. The second and third floors will be home to PBMC’s new heart center, which will include the new cath lab suites as well as new, advanced technology cardiac care and intensive care units designed to serve the entire East End. In addition, the hospital’s helipad will be relocated to the roof of the new critical care tower ensuring immediate, safe transport of the most critical patients.
“Our community has long needed the kind of services we will now be able to provide through this comprehensive critical care tower,” said Sherry Patterson, PBMC board chair and long-time advocate for the cardiac catheterization facility. “We are grateful for the support of so many generous members of the community in helping us fund this project, added Emily Roy Corey, chair of the PBMC Foundation. Their dreams and ours are about to become a reality.”
About Peconic Bay Medical Center
Located in Riverhead, NY, Peconic Bay Medical Center is a non-profit hospital committed to providing exceptional care and improving the health of the communities it serves. Peconic Bay Medical Center offers wide-ranging, full-scope services and programs along with state-of-art technology. Peconic Bay Medical Center joined Northwell Health (formerly North Shore-LIJ), in 2016. For more information, visit PBMCHealth.org.
About Northwell Health
Northwell Health is New York State’s largest health care provider and private employer, with 21 hospitals and over 500 outpatient practices. We care for more than 1.8 million people annually in the metro New York area and beyond, thanks to philanthropic support from our communities. Our 61,000 employees – including 15,000+ nurses and 2,500+ doctors within Northwell Health Physician Partners – are working to change health care for the better. We’re making breakthroughs in medicine at the Feinstein Institute. We're training the next generation of medical professionals at the visionary Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine and the School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies. And we offer health insurance through CareConnect. For information on our more than 100 medical specialties, visit Northwell.edu.