Wyandanch, NY — Founding staff of the Martin Luther King, Jr. (MLK) Health Center and Hudson River Health Care (HRHCare) executives were joined by Assemblywoman Kimberly Jean-Pierre, Babylon Town Supervisor Rich Schaffer, and representatives from the offices of Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone and Senator John E. Brooks to celebrate the health center’s 50th Anniversary at the site of its future location in Delano Stewart Plaza, Wyandanch. Groundbreaking for the new HRHCare MLK Health Center will take place in October 2018. In addition to receiving proclamations from Assemblywoman Jean-Pierre, Mr. Schaffer, Suffolk County, and the Community Health Care Association of New York State, HRHCare CEO and President Anne Kauffman Nolon presented a special award to the family of the MLK Health Center’s founding physician, Dr. Walter O’Connor.
“The MLK Health Center has been a beacon in the Wyandanch community for 50 years,” said Assemblywoman Kimberly Jean-Pierre. “I went into the health center before coming here today, and it was as busy and friendly as ever, which is a testament to its great leadership. I truly hope that Suffolk County and HRHCare can continue this valued partnership.”
Babylon Town Supervisor Rich Schaffer remarked: “I’m joined here today by Deputy Supervisor Tony Martinez and send greetings from Suffolk County Legislator Duwayne Gregory as I present this proclamation. One of my first assignments in North Babylon was sitting on the MLK Health Center advisory board. Happy 50th Anniversary, and here’s to celebrating 50 more in a brand-new building that will provide even more Wyandanch residents with patient visits.”
Drawing inspiration from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s quote “All forms of inequality are unjust, but the injustice in health care is the most shocking and inhumane,” Hudson River Health Care CEO and President Anne Kauffman Nolon, MPH continued: “We have a leader in Dr. King to shed light on this issue. It takes the support of state and county government, the hospital sector, and especially people in the community to create access to high-quality health care for all. We are so proud that Hudson River Health Care has had the opportunity to continue the legacy of the MLK Health Center, and work with Suffolk County to make it even better by expanding health care services, and breaking ground for the new location of the health center this October.”
Founded to provide medical care to the community’s underserved, the Suffolk County Department of Health Services, Good Samaritan Hospital, and Wyandanch community members came together to open the Martin Luther King, Jr. Health Center in the summer of 1968. In 2014, Hudson River Health Care assumed operation of the MLK Health Center, after initially being invited by Suffolk County to operate the county-run health centers in 2012. It continues to provide the highest quality family medicine, pediatrics, women’s health, nutrition services, behavioral health, and podiatry to all those in the Wyandanch community who seek care. The health center is once again proud to be at the forefront of change in Wyandanch by joining forces with community organizations and moving to a new building that will provide Wyandanch residents with access to expanded, integrated health and wellness services.
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