St. John’s Hospital Receives $11.5M in State Funding

Episcopal Health Services Inc., (EHS) received $11,564,000 in grants through the Statewide Health Care Facility Transformation Program III (SHCFTP III) for the establishment of a new Radiation Oncology Center, an Endoscopy Unit and an Adult Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program (CPEP). Administered by the New York State Department of Health and the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York, the Statewide Health Care Facility Transformation Programs support efforts to reduce health care costs and improve the health outcomes of New Yorkers by expanding access to inpatient, primary, preventative, and other ambulatory care services.  

“These funds will enable our health care providers and facilities to further modernize and integrate health care services to ensure that New Yorkers receive access to the medical care they require now and for future generations,” Acting State Health Commissioner James McDonald said. “New York is a national leader in providing first-rate health care thanks to Governor Hochul’s dedication to making sure our health care systems have the resources necessary to deliver the best care possible for all New Yorkers.”

The grants awarded will build and equip a 5,000-square foot outpatient radiation/oncology unit, a 5,000-square foot endoscopy unit and an adult comprehensive psychiatric program (CPEP) within Episcopal Health Service’s existing, and newly renovated, Emergency Department.

“These significant grants will increase the community’s access to state-of-the art services and strengthen our commitment to maintaining and positively increasing the health outcomes of our communities, specifically in areas that have a greater need for advanced level of care,” Gerard Walsh, Chief Executive Officer, Episcopal Health Services, said.

The creation of a Radiation Oncology Unit is the next step in creating a sustainable system of care that provides safe, high quality, health care to the residents of the Rockaways and Five Towns in a cost-effective manner, minimizing duplication of services. It is especially vital to open a Radiation Oncology Unit within the hospital’s catchment area, as cancer is one of the leading causes of premature death in the Rockaways. In fact, when compared to New York City and Queens County, the communities of the Rockaways see higher than average cancer rates for various cancers (471.7 new cases of cancer per 100,000 per year compared to the NYC rate of 442.6 per year). Through New York State DOH cancer data and SPARCS data, the findings indicate a clear need for enhanced access to cancer care in the Rockaways.

The new Endoscopy Unit will help to close the health care disparity gap in the community by increasing access to colorectal screenings and diagnostic modalities for the early and timely detection of colorectal cancer. The project will create a safe, convenient, state of the art endoscopy unit that will provide E.H.S.’s service area with increased access to cancer care services aimed at curing cancer, controlling the growth of the cancer or alleviating systems caused by cancer and support the goal of improving the health and quality of life of residents of the Rockaways.

The Adult Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program (CPEP) will be a 911 receiving facility for psychiatric crises, it will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and consist of a psychiatric emergency room providing triage and evaluation, extended observation beds (up to 72 hours) and mobile crisis outreach in the community to include assessment and crisis intervention. This expansion of the Episcopal Health Services Inc., (EHS) Psychiatric program is in addition to the recently announced plans for a complete renovation of the hospital’s 18,000 square foot Behavioral Health Unit.

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