Orange County Regional Medical Center opens its doors in Middletown today, and the new facility will be the first Catskills area hospital to accommodate Jewish patients. The facility will be equipped with a Shabbos elevator and will have a fully stocked Shabbos room on the ground level, to accommodate the needs of Jewish patients and their families. The Shabbos room will be dedicated by the Friedman family in memory of Rabbi Morton Friedman Z”L, who established the original Shabbos rooms at Upstate Regional Medical Center and Arden Hill Hospital eighteen years ago.
Rabbi Friedman was a renowned resident of Kiryas Joel who was well known for his many acts of chesed and tzedaka. A dedicated Hatzolah member for twenty five years (B318 and KY18), he was a chaplain for the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, the New York State Troopers Policeman’s Benevolence Association, Upstate Regional Medical Center and Arden Hill Hospital. Rabbi Friedman also served as the liaison between the Jewish community and the New York State Thruway Authority and spent countless hours ensuring the smooth operation of the Sloatsburg Mincha Area on the northbound Thruway, which was later renamed in his memory.
The new Hudson Valley hospital opened its new building by moving about 300 patients from its two existing campuses.
The Orange Regional Medical Center shifted the patients to the 600,000-square-foot hospital in Middletown from the Arden Hill campus in Goshen and Horton campus in Middletown on Friday morning.
The new $269 million hospital has been in the works since Horton and Arden Hill merged in 2002 and needed to upgrade from their costly, obsolete facilities, each built 40 or more years ago.
The hospital has 353 patient rooms, an emergency room with 50 treatment bays, a helipad and 1,600 parking spaces. It’s near the intersection of Route 17 and I-84.
New York state provided almost $50 million for the project under a program to streamline health care in the state.