The Ida G. Israel Health Center, a Coney Island Hospital-affiliated health clinic, has been closed since Superstorm Sandy knocked it out of commission this past October. The city’s Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) has since deemed it pointless to rebuild the center on the same 2201 Neptune Avenue location and are looking for higher ground, according to a report from WNYC News.
The current location, precariously located a few blocks away from the water, treats 42,000 visitors a year, providing service for children and adults covering primary care, dentistry and drug rehabilitation. Because of the vital role the center plays in a community with a lot of low-income patients, finding a new location has become a top priority for administrators.
“With this amount of devastation, it was felt the best thing to do was relocate the clinic in the community, so this would never happen again,” Dr. John Maese, medical director of Coney Island Hospital, told WNYC. “We want to make sure this clinic stands the test of time, since it’s such a valuable resource to the community.”
Since the center’s doors have shuttered, local residents have made their way to Coney Island Hospital, a somewhat inconvenient trek for local residents without vehicles.
Dr. Maese estimates that it will take 18 months to set up a new health center, most likely to be relocated in leased office space and will cost an estimated $8 million.