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Stony Brook officials tour Medical Center

With several changes to be made to the front office of the Medical Center, it’s anticipated that Stony Brook University Hospital won’t be staffing it until Feb. 1.

The word came from Chief Operating Officer and Chief Medical Officer Fred Weinbaum who visited the building on Friday, along with Stony Brook Southampton Hospital Chief Executive and President Robert Challoner and several staff members.

Originally, Supervisor Gary Gerth said he thought the only change needed would be to make a bathroom handicapped accessible. However, upon inspection, the office has a handicapped accessible bathroom.

The changes now envisioned are to replace carpeting with wood flooring, more conducive to a medical office where fluids might fall, Mr. Weinbaum said. In addition, he wants to either remove a counter where patients previously checked out after their appointments or cut it back in size,

The work would either be done by the town Public Works Department or an outside contractor might be hired, according to town employee David Clark. That’s a decision for Public Works Commissioner Brian Sherman to make, Mr. Clark said.

There is a second bathroom in the front office that was converted to storage space and may be re-converted to a staff bathroom, Mr. Weinbaum said.

There is still some computer equipment belonging to NYU-Winthrop that must be removed and was expected to be taken out by Dec. 28.

That will make room for computer equipment being moved in by Stony Brook.

As for full staffing at the Medical Center, Dr. Weinbaum said Dr. Josh Potter, who completes his residency next spring and lives on Shelter Island, will be hired.

Another unnamed doctor who is affiliated with a North Fork practice, but won’t be starting there immediately, will also be on staff until Dr. Potter comes on in July.

Dr. Peter Kelt has signed a contract with the town to staff the rear office as of Feb. 1. He has the option of either working alone or bringing in anther group of doctors who have expressed an interest in working with him.

Dr. Nathanael Desire, who was originally thought to be part of the Stony Brook staffing in the front office, apparently prefers to work independently and is looking for space off-Island. Meanwhile, he is informing patients that his office is closing and arranging for patient records to be transferred to a doctor of each patient’s choosing.

A press release on full staffing by Stony Brook has not yet been issued.

This continues to be a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.

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