Memorial Sloan Kettering Hub center to open Sept. 2019

Construction continues at Memorial Sloan Kettering's cancer care facility at the Hub in Uniondale. The center is set to open in 2019. / Newsday / David Reich-Hale

Memorial Sloan Kettering on Thursday said MSK Nassau, its $180 million, 114,000-square-foot cancer facility at the Hub in Uniondale, is on track to open by September 2019.

The New York-based health system held an on-site celebration marking the construction progress at the outpatient treatment and research facility. Construction workers will soon place a temporary roof on the facility ahead...

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Memorial Sloan Kettering on Thursday said MSK Nassau, its $180 million, 114,000-square-foot cancer facility at the Hub in Uniondale, is on track to open by September 2019.

The New York-based health system held an on-site celebration marking the construction progress at the outpatient treatment and research facility. Construction workers will soon place a temporary roof on the facility ahead of the winter months.

Memorial Sloan Kettering said up to 220 employees will work at MSK Nassau, which will have more than 20 cancer doctors covering multiple disciplines, such as medical and radiation oncology, radiology and surgery. The cost of the project was originally estimated at close to $140 million, but was increased, in part, to accommodate enhanced clinical equipment and healthcare information technology.

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The health system said it will close its current Rockville Centre facility at Mercy Hospital once the new location is live.

“We have about 27,000 square feet there, and with the population of Long Island being what it is, we need a much bigger facility,” said Dr. Richard Barakat, director of Memorial Sloan Kettering’s regional network.

The health system will more than double the number of exam rooms, to 38, once it moves to Uniondale.

Barakat added that the new location could be expanded.

“It probably will be 140,000 square feet soon after we open it,” he said.

The health system said it expects 75,000 visits from patients in the first year.

Memorial Sloan Kettering last year also expanded its Commack clinic by 38,000 square feet, to a total of more than 91,000 square feet.

It also plans to open a free standing cancer care ambulatory center in Montvale, New Jersey, in 2018.

Other health systems are also expanding cancer care services on Long Island. For example, Northwell Health opened its first cancer-care center in Suffolk County about a year ago. The Imbert Cancer Center replaced a former King Kullen supermarket at 440 E. Main St. in Bay Shore.

New Hyde Park-based Northwell Health, with 62,000 employees, is the largest health system in the state.