Brookhaven Memorial Hospital becomes Long Island Medical Center
Lips have been kept sealed for quite some time as Brookhaven Memorial Hospital Medical Center geared up for a complete rebranding with a name change and everything.
As of this week, BMHMC will now be called Long Island Medical Center, though CEO and president Richard Margulis and Cynthia Ruff, vice president of branding and stakeholder relations, acknowledge the time it will take to become their new name.
“It is not just about putting a new name out there,” he said. “There is a responsibility [we are taking on] about embracing who we are.”
Ruff, according to Margulis, was hired about two years ago with rebranding in mind. The over-a-year-in-the-making rebranding was not a change that happened overnight and the board, he said, has been carefully making decisions, including stakeholder meetings, focus groups, employee surveys and listening to the community.
BMHMC, now LIMC, is the only independent hospital left on Long Island and serves the needs of a 400,000-plus population living within 28 different zip codes.
“We will continue to be independently committed to our community and we will be the leading destination for community patients and hospital employees alike,” said board chairman Mark Mulholland.
“Our board is very cognizant of our community and our mission to the community,” added Margulis, explaining the careful consideration they took not only in deciding on the name but also their new identity. “We are not trying to walk away from what we are but rather transition to who we have become,” he added, noting the board’s pride in their heritage.
Healthcare, he said, has changed dramatically, becoming impersonal, while BMH on the other hand has remained personal. Over the past five years, with Margulis at the helm, the hospital and its staff have been working to improve the quality of its services, Ruff explained. She said they hope the rebranding will help the hospital move away from the age-old stigma it once had and toward more of the community feel they have worked so hard to create.
“Our doctors, nurses and team have worked hard every day towards this new identity that reflects our current times,” she said. “We have set a new level of expectation and now have a new emblem in front of that.”
Founded in 1956, the hospital began as a two-story building on a road built specifically for it. Since then the hospital has grown, with first an emergency room and many additions, up to the most recent Knapp Cardiac Care Center and the approval of 12 additional hemodialysis chairs at the former John J. Foley site in Yaphank.
They now provide the community with a number of services including: bariatric care, behavioral health, cancer care, cardiac care, diagnostics, diabetes care and education, emergency medicine, family medicine, gastroenterology, home healthcare, hospice care, hospital services, nutritional services, imaging/radiology, infectious diseases, intensive care, medicine, neurology, nutritional services, nephrology, orthopedics, pain management, palliative care, primary care, pulmonary care, physical medicine and rehabilitation, respiratory care, sleep care, spinal, stroke, surgery, women's health and wound care and hyperbaric medicine.
The change was kept quiet, Ruff explained, by first working internally to evaluate their mission and only announcing the actual rebranding a few weeks ago. The name/rebranding was announced at Feb. 13’s “It’s Who We Are” kickoff. Media advertising began the very next day. The logo has also been changed to a lighthouse with a medical insignia.
“We know it’s not just something we can flip the switch on. We are going to live with two identities [Brookhaven Memorial and Long Island Medical Center] for a while, as we take time to process the change,” added Margulis. “We want to continue to be a leader in the community as one of the top 32 largest employers with 2,500 employees and 550 doctors.”
“We can’t emphasize community enough. We want to be the hospital residents can rely on,” said Ruff. “We want the community to choose us and for our employees to be able to align with our expectations and values.”
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