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Left-behind Brooklynites get $200M health boost

A dozen sites have been earmarked for a $200 million effort to improve access to health care in Brooklyn.

Several of the ambulatory care sites will be integrated with affordable housing being developed as part of the Vital Brooklyn initiative unveiled by Governor Andrew Cuomo last year to invest in the parts of Brooklyn that have been ignored in the boroughʼs millennial boom.

Cuomo announced that One Brooklyn Health — the name for the new health system created as part of Vital Brooklyn — identified the sites and entered into partnerships with six Brooklyn-based federally qualified health centers to form the foundation of its 2-site ambulatory care network.

More than $140 million will be invested in the flagship projects and another $30 million will be invested in six Brooklyn-based FQHCs to open or expand 11 community health centers.

Another $40 million has been reserved for additional ambulatory care locations in central Brooklyn that have been identified as being particularly underserved.

“One of the top priorities of the Vital Brooklyn initiative has been to provide greater access to quality healthcare to residents, and with the creation of this ambulatory care network, we are making that a reality,” Governor Cuomo said.

“As the federal government continues to attack our fundamental right to affordable healthcare, New York will fight to ensure that everyone, regardless of zip code, will receive the care and services they need to lead full, healthy lives.”

The sites include: The Medical Village at Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center (KJMC): The Medical Village, located at the KJMC campus in Crown Heights, will be redeveloped to offer outpatient clinical and patient supportive services. Several specialized Ambulatory Centers of Excellence will be co-located on the campus;

Bishop Walker Health Care Center in Prospect Heights will be completely renovated and reconfigured to expand its capacity and add exam rooms, with a particular focus on women’s and children’s health. N new affordable housing will be included as part of the Vital Brooklyn Initiative;

The Medical Village at Brooklyn Developmental Center (BDC) in East New York will include a new, state of the art ambulatory surgery and imaging center that will also be developed in conjunction with the new affordable housing.

Pierre Toussaint Health Center in Crown Heights will renovate 2,500 s/f of underutilized space to increase primary care capacity and help reduce unnecessary emergency department visits.

Old Bristol Women & Child Health in East New York will be fully renovated and reopened to provide women’s and children’s health services.

One Brooklyn Health will provide $10.3 million for Brownsville Multi-Service Center to create a new 50,000 s/f health clinic to replace its existing 27,000 s/f location at 592 Rockaway Avenue.

Bed-Stuy Family Health Center will get $2.25 million to open a new 5,000 s/f Primary Care satellite site “in a medically underserved Brooklyn neighborhood.”

Brightpoint Health will transform at least 10,000 s/f of its Alpha School Facility to better address chronic health conditions, and improve the patient experience including the addition of an elevator and an onsite pharmacy services.

A $4 million grant from One Brooklyn Health will support the construction of the integrated care center. An additional $1 million grant will support the renovation of 2,500 s/f of underutilized space to create an urgent care center.

ODA Crown Heights will establish a 15-20,000 s/f primary and specialty care center with $6 million in grant funding.

Community Health Network will identify a location to expand the organization’s primary care capacity.
Brooklyn Plaza Medical Center will receive funding to open two new ambulatory care sites focusing on pediatrics, teen health, adult and geriatric health.

The Ambulatory Care Network will also include an additional nine sites in neighborhoods that have been identified throughout Central Brooklyn as being underserved and in particular need of primary and specialty care services.

In April, the Governor announced five RFPs to construct more than 2,000 affordable homes on parcels of land controlled by the state or owned by Interfaith Medical Center, Brookdale University Hospital, and the state-owned Brooklyn Developmental Center. Proposals are due by July 13, 2018.

These solicitations will advance the Vital Brooklyn initiative’s commitment to build 3,000 units of affordable housing in Central Brooklyn.

The Governor announced a suite of awards and RFPs to improve access to open space, recreation, and healthy food; expand education and economic empowerment initiatives; improve community-based violence prevention; and enhance resiliency.

Compared to the rest of the state, Central Brooklyn lacks access to primary care doctors and other critical mental health services. Recent statistics show that there are only 55 primary care physicians per 100,000 people in Central Brooklyn, while the statewide average doubles that figure.

Additionally, there are 497 Emergency Room visits in Central Brooklyn for every 1,000 people, which also eclipses the statewide average.

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