Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the New Mount Vernon Health Care Complex
Why can’t Mount Vernon remain open as a hospital?
- When Montefiore came to Mount Vernon in 2013, the hospital was in bankruptcy, the facility was in disrepair and the inpatient census was very low. Over the past six years, we have worked to improve patient care, infrastructure and the patient experience. Despite our efforts, on any given day, fewer than 50 of the 121 licensed inpatient beds, including psychiatry, are in use. This number has remained constant over the years and is not a sustainable model.
- The new health care complex on Sandford Boulevard responds to the health care needs that the community presented to us as well as regional and national trends in health care. More complicated care can now be provided in ambulatory settings, which results in better community-based care and reduces the need for hospitalizations.
What services do you plan to provide in the Ambulatory Care Center?
- The new, multi-specialty, state-of-the-art Ambulatory Care Center will include pediatrics, adult primary care, women’s health, specialty and behavioral health care, interdisciplinary care for chronic disease management, cardiac testing (stress test and echocardiography), a wound care program and imaging services including mammography, X-ray and ultrasound and laboratory services.
What services are provided at a Hospital-Based Off-Campus Emergency Department?
The new, state-of-the-art location will be a full-service Hospital-Based Off-Campus Emergency Department. It will:
- Be staffed by board-certified Emergency Medicine physicians with ready access to specialists, resources and advanced services, including cardiac diagnostics and monitoring, digital X-ray, CT scanner and laboratory and pharmacy services.
- Comply with Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA) federal law, meaning we will treat all patients who present to the Emergency Department, regardless of status or ability to pay.
- Be open 24/7, as required by New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) regulations, with protocols in place for the immediate, direct and seamless transfer of patients to acute care hospitals.
- Accept patients who arrive by ambulance or walk in.
What happens if someone who comes to Sandford Boulevard Emergency Department requires a hospital admission?
- All patients who come to the Sandford Boulevard Emergency Department will be assessed, treated and stabilized, just as they would be in any hospital Emergency Department.
- People who require inpatient care will be seamlessly transferred by ambulance to the most appropriate hospital for their condition. An ambulance will be at the site 24/7. Patients admitted to Montefiore New Rochelle Hospital will be transferred directly from the Sandford Boulevard Emergency Department to a hospital inpatient room.
- In non-emergency situations, patients can choose any one of the excellent nearby hospitals. In fact, there are four hospitals within four miles of Mount Vernon.
What are the plans for the psychiatric inpatient unit?
- Montefiore is working with the Office of Mental Health of New York State and the Westchester County Department of Mental Health to determine plans for inpatient psychiatric care within the county.
- We continue to work with the State to ensure that the local community has the outpatient behavioral health services it needs.
How will the Hospital-Based Off-Campus Emergency Department on Sandford Boulevard differ from an urgent care center?
|The Full-Service Hospital-Based Emergency Department
|Urgent Care Center
|Accepts patients who walk in
|Patients arrive via ambulance
|Required to be staffed by board-certified Emergency Medicine physicians
|Offers ready access to specialists
|Offers access to resources like advanced imaging services
|Required to treat all who come, regardless of status or ability to pay, in accordance with EMTALA regulations
|Required by NYSDOH regulations to remain open 24/7
|Required to have protocols for immediate and direct transfers of patients to acute care hospitals, rather than calling 911 and having patients sent to a separate facility
What about care for the senior citizens of Mount Vernon?
- We are undertaking this transformation with the same goal that we have always had since coming to Mount Vernon in 2013 – providing the best care for the community, including Mount Vernon’s senior citizens.
- Once it is open, the new Sandford Boulevard location will provide more comprehensive well-coordinated ambulatory care, in a patient-centered setting, than what is currently being provided at Montefiore Mount Vernon Hospital. This improvement is possible because of the new, state-of-the-art building and the equipment it can support. Programs offered will specifically address the needs of senior citizens, included integrated medical and mental health care, chronic disease management and wound care.
- Anyone requiring hospitalization will be transferred – once treated and stabilized – to the best nearby hospital for their condition.
Where will surgical services be provided?
- Surgical services will be provided at area hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers within Montefiore Health System.
Was the decertification of beds in 2017 the beginning of a plan to close Montefiore Mount Vernon Hospital?
- No. When Montefiore first came to Mount Vernon in 2013, we made several large investments to improve the infrastructure and patient experience to better serve the community. In 2017, due to the ongoing reduced demand for inpatient services, we filed a request to decertify 55 beds that had not been in use for years prior to the acquisition of the facility. The state approved this request. In 2017, before the approval to decertify the 55 beds, there were 176 licensed beds. Since that time, and still today, there are 121 licensed beds, with less than half in use on any given day.
What will happen to Montefiore Mount Vernon Hospital’s Stroke and AIDS Center designations?
- We will be working with the New York State Department of Health on the future of the AIDS Center designation.
- The Sandford Boulevard location will not be a primary stroke center. Any patient who arrives with a possible stroke will be assessed and stabilized. Those needing immediate stroke treatment will be directly transferred to the nearest stroke center most appropriate for their care.
- Montefiore’s Moses Campus, just four miles from Mount Vernon, is the only comprehensive stroke center from the Bronx to Albany.
What will happen to the people currently working at Montefiore Mount Vernon Hospital once the new location is open?
- The current Montefiore Mount Vernon Hospital employees have been critical to the achievements we have made over the past six years. They have worked to provide the best care to the Mount Vernon community since even before Montefiore arrived in 2013.
- The current Montefiore Mount Vernon Hospital will continue operating until the new location is open, which we expect to happen at the end of 2020. Current employees who are qualified will have opportunities for employment at the new Sandford Boulevard location. We will work closely with the employees and the unions who represent them over the course of this transition to address its impact.
What will happen to the current Montefiore Mount Vernon Hospital site?
- No decisions have been made, but in the coming weeks and months, we will engage with elected officials and community leaders to hear input on what they would like to see at the Montefiore Mount Vernon Hospital campus in the future.