health mind and body

Hi-tech med grows at Far Rockaway hospital

Wound Care Center reopens with 2 new hyperbaric oxygen chambers


The Far Towns’ neighborhood medical center — St. John’s Episcopal Hospital in Far Rockaway — proudly cut the ribbon last week opening its newest improvement: a state-of the-art wound care center featuring two hyperbaric oxygen chambers.

The machines provide oxygen saturation to patients with limb or life-threatening wounds.

“Wound care has been a part of St. John’s for a long time,” said COO Christopher Parks, but the new machines will provide patients with increased space and comfort during their treatments.

Far Rockaway state Senator James Sanders Jr. volunteered to exhibit just how spacious the units are — allowing himself to be rolled into one. Inside the chamber, he stretched his arms upward and exclaimed, “I love this hospital.”

St. John’s, which took over operation of its wound care center from an outside company, has two new chambers, which together can serve about eight patients a day. And there’s room for two more units.

“We have a huge need in the area,” said Dr. Joseph Tarantino, associate director of wound care, who said the nearest comparable facility was at Mercy Medical Cener in Rockville Centre. Patients need to undergo treatment for several successive days, so having a nearby facility is especialy desirable, he said.

Among other major improvements in the works at St. John’s, which is located on Beach 20th Street (the continuation of Central Avenue), is an upgraded emergency facility.