24-hour facility to fill void in Bay Ridge, Dyker, and neighboring communities
Maimonides Medical Center offered a sneak peek of its brand new state-of-the-art emergency department this past Wednesday, May 3 — and the Brooklyn Eagle had a front row seat to both the preview and the ribbon cutting.
The one-level, 15,000-square foot center will be within the site of the former Victory Memorial Hospital, which closed its doors some 15 years ago.
“There has been a massive health care gap in this community since the loss of Victory Memorial,” Dr. Ahmed Rashed, medical director of the Maimonides Bay Ridge Emergency Department, told the Eagle. “We are here to bring a high level of care back to Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Bensonhurst, and all the other surrounding neighborhoods.”
Rashed pointed out that the facility will offer “all emergency services – from birth to death – including pediatrics, OB-GYN, mental health, cardiac, stroke, and orthopedics.”
The center, located at 9036 Seventh Avenue, will boast 22 treatment bays, which can easily expand to double that capacity should a mass casualty incident arise, Rashed explained, adding that one of the more unique attributes of the facility, as compared to similar ones, is that it will have a direct-to-bed triage system.
“This means there will be essentially zero wait time for our patients to be seen,” he said, noting that in an emergency situation, time is of the essence.
“The closest emergency room is (NYU) Langone, which is 2.2 miles away – and the main Maimonides campus, which is 2.1 miles away,” Rashed said. “And as you know, two miles away in Brooklyn – you may as well be going to another state.”
Dr. John Marshall, chair of the department of emergency medicine, and vice president for medical affairs at Maimonides Medical Center, explained that the new facility must be prepared to do anything and everything medical.
“We have equipment to deliver babies; we have equipment to resuscitate and stabilize trauma victims; we’ve got blood products, medications, and lab services,” Marshall said. “So if a patient comes here with a heart attack, for example, we can start the care right here; and we have an ambulance on site, so they’ll be able to transport them directly to where they need to be afterward.”
Ken Gibbs, CEO of Maimonides Medical Center, told the Eagle that the citizens of Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, and the surrounding areas, are neighborhoods with powerful culture – diverse communities – and they represent the strength of Brooklyn.
“We at Maimonides are not only committed to excellent healthcare, but also to community connection. And putting this facility here is going to create access and speed; it meets a need; it fills a vacuum,” Gibbs said.
Bay Ridge Councilmember Justin Brannan, who was also in attendance at the Maimonides unveiling, described the event as “a really big day.”
“Having a world class stand-alone emergency department here is definitely what we need, and speaks to getting away from the idea that if you want world class medical care, you have to go to Manhattan. You can stay right here in your own backyard,” Brannan said.