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At ceremony, Barnabas reveals details of Bayonne facility

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Barnabas Health Systems is expanding its presence in Hudson County into a full-service medical facility in Bayonne, which also will serve as a satellite emergency center for its Jersey City Medical Center.

The roughly $50 million project is revamping a vacant commercial building located in a densely populated area of the city, and will include an additional parking garage.

"The city is very interested in redeveloping this area," Jersey City Medical Center CEO and President Joseph Scott said at the announcement event Thursday.

"We believe there is a demand here and we are an in-network provider, unlike the other hospitals in the area," he said, adding that he often hear complaints from Bayonne residents about the distance required to travel to Jersey City for medical care.

The city's permitting process is complete and building should begin next month, Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis said.

But the emergency services portion requires additional licensing from the state Department of Health. 

"Barnabas has not filed a licensing application. The department would have to review the application and could require additional information," according to DOH spokeswoman Donna Leusner.

In addition to providing services to the community, the new center will increase the commercial base for the city, Davis said, adding the building had been vacant for about five years.

And because of its central location, on Broadway, the center will draw more foot traffic and businesses to the area, he said.

CarePoint's Bayonne Medical Center, which is six blocks away from the new Barnabas site, is also an in-network facility that provides emergency care.

CarePoint spokesman Jarrod Bernstein said, "Ninety percent of the encounters at BMC are in-network and, according to state law, 100 percent of emergency department visits are treated as in-network."

Barnabas will lease space at the building out to physicians as well as digital imaging services, creating a revenue stream.

But the focus is the approximately 150 jobs that will be created, and the increased service to residents in Bayonne, Scott said.

"You know you are on the right track when, before the building is open, people stop you in the street and ask if you accept their insurance," he said.

Other services in the 80,000-square-foot building will include a retail pharmacy, medical and surgical specialists, women's health services, pediatric care, outpatient physical therapy and community health education.

The project is slated to finish by December 2016.

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