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Highlights in the History of Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center

Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center is a 537 bed (including 100 nursing home beds) medical center located on the south shore of Long Island in West Islip, New York. On March 20, 1958, the name Good Samaritan was chosen for the 175-bed, not-for-profit community hospital under construction on a 60-acre site overlooking the Great South Bay.

Expansion & Growth


Good Samaritan Hospital opened its doors on May 18, 1959. For more than 50 years, the hospital has consistently sought to provide the highest quality heatlh care to residents of Long Island. It has undergone major expansions six times: to the east in 1966; to the south with the 120-bed Baxter Pavilion in 1970; to the west with two additional patient floors in 1973; to the north in 1983 with a five-story addition which included eight new operating rooms and new radiology and pediatric departments; and in 1996 with a four-story addition for the teaching, mammography, pathology and surgical programs.

The sixth expansion, begun in 1998, was a new two-story structure connected to the main building by a corridor. The Center for Emergency Medicine and Trauma, which was dedicated on April 22, 2001, encompasses the first floor. This 29,200 square foot, state-of-the-art facility’s unique features include an expanded Triage and Fast Track area, more than 40 adult and pediatric patient care areas, digital filmless radiography, a trauma center and the only Pediatric Emergency Department in Suffolk County. The second floor houses the most modern Ambulatory Surgery Unit on Long Island and has five operating rooms and two pain management suites.

Cancer Care

In the spring of 1995, the Medical Center’s oncology services received a Comprehensive Cancer Program designation by the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. This special recognition is given to only one of approximately every four hospitals that treat cancer. This distinguished organization also honored Good Sam in 2005 with its Outstanding Achievement Award, making it one of only two hospitals in New York state to receive this honor.

Up-to-date facilities for the care and management of cancer patients are provided in the Radiation Oncology Center. Dedicated personnel perform the treatment planning, prescribe appropriate doses of radiation, deliver radiation and manage the patient’s overall oncologic care. The centerpiece of the department is the Varian TrueBeam Radiotherapy Linear Accelerator. The art of radiation therapy is practiced in two main arenas – teletherapy (or external beam) and brachytherapy (or radioactive implants). In 1999, stereotactic radiotherapy and radiosurgery were added to the existing technologies to treat brain tumors and other intracranial lesions.

The Women's Imaging Center is the first comprehensive breast care center on Long Island. It is the only breast care facility on Long Island to be accredited by the American College of Radiology for excellence in the performance of all types of stereotactic and ultrasound guided biopsies. The careful performance of these biopsies has dramatically lowered surgery rates for benign conditions and allowed superior outcomes for patients requiring surgical treatment for breast cancer.  It also is the first facility to acquire 3-D digital breast tomosynthesis for breast cancer diagnosis.

Good Samaritan’s Oncology Unit provides 24-hour care to acute medical patients. These patients are newly diagnosed with cancer, receiving either chemotherapy or radiation therapy or experiencing complications from the disease. Patients with intractable pain and Hospice patients in need of symptom management or hospitalization are admitted here.

Maternal/Child Care

With nearly 2,800 babies born at Good Samaritan every year, the accommodations for the BirthPlace have been specially designed with the mother’s comfort and well being in mind. Special considerations have been taken to ensure that the parents have ample time to bond with their newborn. Family members, especially grandparents and siblings are welcome to visit the newest member of the family. Infants are cared for in either the 36-bed nursery or the 16-bed Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Many classes are offered to parents prior to the birth through the Perinatal Education Program and support is also available when the hospital stay is completed through the Mom and Me Care Program and New Mother’s Support Group.

Newborn & Pediatric Patients

To meet the medical needs of the infants and children of the community, the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) was established in 1995. An interdisciplinary team including physical therapists, social workers, pediatric subspecialists and specially trained nurses, staff the NICU. The Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, the first on the south shore of Suffolk County, was opened in October 1997.  The Pediatric Emergency Department accepted its first patient in January 1998 and provided care for more than 17,000 children in its opening year. The first expansion of the Center for Pediatric Specialty Care, a multispecialty pediatric center, was completed in July 1998 in a location across the street from the Medical Center. Pediatric specialty physicians, pediatricians who receive comprehensive training in particular areas, include cardiologists, neurologists, gastroenterologists, endocrinologists and pulmonologists. Due to increased demands, a new expanded location was chosen for the Center in June 2007 at 655 Deer Park Ave in Babylon. This new center provides 22 examination and treatment rooms, 180 dedicated parking spots and more appointment slots and staffing.

Vascular & Cardiology Care

On July 27, 1999, a state-of-the-art Vascular Suite opened. This equipment gives hospital radiologists the ability to capture exceptionally high-resolution, digitally enhanced images of the smallest abnormalities in the human vascular (blood vessel) system. In April of 2000, the first endovascular grafting procedure of an abdominal aortic aneurysm was performed at Good Samaritan. This minimally invasive procedure involves the placement of a patient-customized aortic graft to relieve a life threatening ballooning of the patient’s aorta.

To enhance its growing cardiac care services, Good Samaritan has increased its capability for monitoring cardiac patients at bedside or by telemetry, in addition to its comprehensive facilities in coronary care and special care. In addition, Good Samaritan’s dedicated Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory is specially equipped to evaluate patients with coronary heart disease for appropriate treatment.

In January 2007, Good Samaritan started a Cardiac Rehabilitation Program. This program was created to benefit patients who have, or are recovering from, heart conditions or procedures. The cardiac rehabilitation team provides individualized care to help patients improve their physical, emotional and spiritual well being and make appropriate lifestyle changes.

To accommodate an increase in patient volume while enhancing patient satisfaction, the Division of Cardiology was renovated in 2011.  Patients and their families now have the use of a separate, dedicated waiting room.  Patients are cared for by physicians, nurses and other medical staff—who are among the top in their field—in both the advanced cardiac unit pre-procedure area, which was expanded to 8 beds, and the post-procedure area, now equipped with 16 beds, including 1 in a respiratory isolation room.  Procedures—such as diagnostic and interventional cardiac catheterizations, electrophysiology studies, ablations, and pacemaker and ICD implants—are performed in fully equipped catheterization labs, with a dedicated electrophysiology lab.

The approval from the State Hospital Review and Planning Council to develop an open heart surgery program in conjunction with St. Francis Hospital further extended the cardiac continuum of care at Good Samaritan.  Good Samaritan was the first community hospital in Suffolk County to offer both emergency angioplasty and cardiac rehabilitation.  Like St. Francis, the medical center has achieved the highest level of care and patient safety available, with superior clinical outcomes.  These renovations to the cardiology facilities are an important component in securing the ongoing availability of the finest cardiac services for the residents of southwest Suffolk County.

Extending Care Beyond the Walls of GSHMC

Good Samaritan has reached out to the community in numerous ways. In the summer of 1968, Good Samaritan joined forces with Suffolk County in providing comprehensive health services to residents of a medically-underserved community. Today, close to 50,000 patient visits are made each year to the Martin Luther King, Jr., Community Health Center in Wyandanch.

In 1976, Good Samaritan was the first hospital in Suffolk County to provide freestanding dialysis service for patients with chronic kidney disease. Currently, the 25-station Good Samaritan Dialysis Center in Bay Shore operates six days-a-week, and provides a total of 34,500 treatments to more than 300 patients. An additional site opened in Lindenhurst in the summer of 2000 to accommodate the community’s increasing demands.

In February 1980, Good Samaritan acquired the former Sayville Nursing Home for elderly patients who could no longer live home alone. The structure at the corner of Elm and Candee Avenues was totally refurbished as the Good Samaritan Nursing Home with skilled nursing facilities for 100 patient-residents.

In 1984, Good Samaritan began its certified Home Health Care Agency, which provides a wide variety of comprehensive health care services to patients in their own homes. In addition to skilled nursing care, these services include those by physical, occupational and speech therapists, medical social workers and home health aides. Intravenous therapy, medical supplies and equipment, laboratory services and pharmacy supplies are also provided. The Good Samaritan Long-Term Home Health Care Agency accepted its first patient in 1989.

As a member of Catholic Health Services, Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center will continue providing quality care for patients in the community.

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