Visitors to the Bethpage headquarters of Adults and Children with Learning and Developmental Disabilities can find an array of services -- some uncomfortably close to each other.
The nonprofit's administration operates in an old office building doubling as a medical facility. The patients' waiting room also serves as a corridor for paper deliveries and business unrelated to treatment.
"It's not really the best situation," acknowledged Aaron Liebowitz, ACLD's executive director. "If you went to a doctor's office, you wouldn't expect to be sitting there like that, with all the traffic going through."
Officials expect that to end as the agency starts development of a $10-million health facility. If town site and building plans are approved as anticipated, construction on the South Oyster Bay Road site will begin in July and be completed for summer 2012.
Other than giving developmentally disabled patients dedicated, private space for medical care, the 22,000-square-foot building will include major equipment upgrades. Dental X-ray machines will be digital, while doctors will use ultrasound for the first time.
Foundation trustee Joel Pashcow, a Great Neck private investor, recommended the gift. His developmentally disabled daughter, Lauren, receives care from the nonprofit, and his parents contributed to name the adult day services center.
The remainder of funding, officials said, came from a combination of private donations and tax-exempt bonding.
Primary care and OB/GYN services are among the most in-demand for the developmentally disabled, according to Colleen Crispino, ACLD's director of development and community relations. The new facility will devote an entire floor to such medical care, away from administration, which will operate from the second floor.
"ACLD is unique in that it's attained the size to provide a whole number of services that smaller agencies can't," Pashcow said. "They create family life in the group homes, find young people jobs and do all sorts of things to allow them to be as independent as possible."
But Pashcow has also spent time in the current medical facility's waiting room.
"Obviously," he said, "I saw the need."