Cohen children’s launches space-age MRI suite

Suite heart: Cohen Children’s ambassador Olivia Macchio of Garden City, who was treated by CCMC at age 7 for Burkitt’s lymphoma, checks out the spaced-out Children’s Medical Fund Center for Diagnostic Studies.

A $10 million donation from the Children’s Medical Fund of New York will send the youngest patients at the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Children’s Medical Center into space.

The gift from the 50-year-old philanthropic organization, which has doled out nearly $90 million in charitable donations over its half-century of work, is the backbone of the Children’s Medical Fund Center for Diagnostic Studies, located on the fourth floor of the medical center’s new six-story Cohen Children’s pavilion in New Hyde Park.

While youngsters won’t actually strap into a SpaceX rocket, the suite does provide a virtual voyage to the stars, decorated with a deep-space NASA theme and packed with high-tech gadgetry designed to set imaginations soaring – including a mockup of a magnetic resonance imaging machine patients can practice on themselves, as well as 3D goggles that let kids enjoy their favorite films during their actual examinations.

The idea is to “make the ordeal of testing a unique and wondrous experience, instead of an anxiety-ridden event,” according to a statement from the Northwell Health system, which began servicing youngsters in the state-of-the-art spaceport in March.

As for space-age medical tech, the 5,500-square-foot CMF Center for Diagnostic Studies is stocked with several advanced 3D MRI machines dedicated specifically to children.

The new pediatric suite unit will allow Cohen Children’s Medical Center staff to avoid sending young patients to neighboring, but not child-optimized, Long Island Jewish Medical Center for important MRI scans. Cohen Children’s, which celebrates its 34th year in 2017, expects to service 4,500 pediatric patients annually in its futuristic diagnostic center.

When the Children’s Medical Fund first announced the $10 million donation last fall, Northwell Health called it a “transformational gift.” This week, CMF Chairman David Blumenfeld said his organization was “proud to have funded” the spaced-out MRI suite.

“We knew that the CMF Center would be tremendously important to patients and families,” Blumenfeld noted. “We could not be more pleased to help Cohen Children’s offer state-of-the-art diagnostic services.”

The Children’s Medical Fund Center for Diagnostic Studies is open Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. For appointments and more information, call (718) 470-3750.