PROGRESS REPORT: L.H.G.V., a growing community healthcare hub

Lenox Health Greenwich Village, on Seventh Ave. between 12th and 13th Sts., offers a 24/7 emergency department, imaging services and more. Photo by Lee Weissman
Lenox Health Greenwich Village, on Seventh Ave. between 12th and 13th Sts., offers a 24/7 emergency department, imaging services and more. Photo by Lee Weissman

BY ALEX HELLINGER | While walking down Seventh Ave., you may wonder, “What exactly is that gleaming, white ship-shaped building towering over the street?”

The landmarked National Maritime Union Building, built in 1963, has undergone massive renovations since Northwell Health acquired it in 2011. In 2014, we opened Manhattan’s first and only freestanding emergency center as a first step to fill the gap of healthcare services needed in this neighborhood and ease the hardships our community has endured due to the closure of St. Vincent’s Hospital.

In building a medical center from scratch, we had the opportunity to step back and take a fresh look at how healthcare should be delivered from a patient’s perspective. Every detail was done with the patient at the center of all of our decisions. We offer private rooms equipped with interactive monitors, giving patients the ability to watch TV or movies, use the Internet, learn about certain illnesses, enjoy a stress-relieving video or even Skype a loved one within our emergency department. Our desire was to create something very special for patients in need of help at a critical time in their lives. Our patients seem to agree. Our emergency department gets rave reviews. In fact, our patient-satisfaction scores are above the 90th percentile in the New York region.

Our emergency department is open 24/7/365 and cares for all patients regardless of their ability to pay.  We have treated more than 80,000 patients in our first two and a half years. We’ve administered clot-busting medications to patients with strokes. We’ve provided critical care to hundreds of patients with heart failure, COPD, aneurysms, respiratory failure, pneumonia, influenza, diabetes, allergic reactions and more. We’ve sutured thousands of lacerations. We’ve cared for hundreds of psychiatric patients and thousands with drug- or alcohol-related emergencies.

The opening of the emergency center was just the beginning of our $150-million-dollar investment to the residents of this community; we are building a true comprehensive medical network throughout Downtown Manhattan.

In July, we opened our state-of-the-art Imaging Center, which puts an end to Uptown odysseys for radiology services. We realize that being referred for an imaging study can be a stressful experience that can be compounded by the inconvenience of having to travel to out-of-the-way facilities. Now, this important service is available right here at Lenox Health Greenwich Village, at W. 13th St. and Seventh Ave. Our Imaging Center offers the most advanced technologies in a comfortable, convenient setting.

Here you can get a full range of breast cancer screening exams, including 3D mammography, a new imaging option that diminishes the rate of false positives by about 40 percent. We are one of only a handful of centers that offer this new imagining option. In addition to our full range of breast-imaging services, our brand-new 13,000-square-foot center also offers magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), CT scans, ultrasounds, digital X-rays and bone-density testing.

We realize that not every healthcare need requires a trip to an emergency department, which is why we opened a Northwell Health Physician Partners site at 121 W. 20th St., which offers convenient primary- and specialty-care physicians to our community. We will be opening additional physician offices in our neighborhood in the months and years to come, so our residents have access to high-quality care right where they live.

We have also partnered with GoHealth Urgent Care Centers to improve access to care and have opened up multiple locations in the Downtown area, including 225 W. 23rd St., 176 Third Ave. and 41 E. Eighth St.

Later this year, L.H.G.V. will open an Ambulatory Surgery Center, physician offices and a beautiful new conference room space that will be open for community use. We believe in and support this community. We have partnerships with the NY Alliance Against Sexual Assault, The L.G.B.T. Center and the NYC AIDS Memorial. We are sponsors of the Greenwich Village Little League and L.G.B.T. Sports League, and contributed funds to renovate the L.G.B.T. Center. We open our doors for innumerable tours of the facility, administer free flu shots, offer CPR classes and routinely perform health screenings at various health fairs.

Following the tragic terrorist bombing in Chelsea last year, nine of the 31 individuals who sustained injuries from the explosion were treated here at L.H.G.V. We proudly accepted a proclamation from the city of New York for the services provided to the community during this event. We feel that our services have become a vital community resource.

In short, we’re part of the fabric of this community and we encourage you to find out for yourself how we can meet your health needs, now and in the future. We invite you to stop by, visit our Web site, at lenoxhealth.com, or give us a call at 646-665-6000 to learn more about our facility.

Hellinger is executive director, Lenox Health Greenwich Village