Tag Archives: Margaret Tietz

Kosher kitchen opens at Margaret Tietz


| mhayes@queenscourier.com

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The Margaret Tietz Nursing and Rehabilitation Center is keeping it kosher for patients and their families.

The center, located on Chapin Parkway in Jamaica, formally opened its new completely kosher kitchen on Thursday, October 25.

“You have to look at the people in the community and cater to them,” said Margaret Tietz president and CEO Michael Fassler.

Fassler noted that the surrounding area is mainly Jewish, and that a completely kosher kitchen was in demand. After getting approval from the Department of Health, renovations began last summer.

Previously, the center’s kitchen housed two kosher and non-kosher sections. The roughly $200,000 renovation took down walls, rerouted ventilation and resulted three months later in a kitchen ready to cater to the Jewish patients and their families.

At Thursday’s opening, over 100 people from the community, along with distinguished rabbis and Legislators, enjoyed a kosher meal. City councilmembers, assemblymembers, area rabbis and the center’s executive staff gave speeches, speaking highly and warmly of the services that Margaret Tietz provides.

Fassler said that the move from a two-part kitchen to solely kosher was a gradual transition. The kosher kitchen has successfully been serving since September.

“We’ve had tremendous community support, and the chefs are really great,” said Fassler. “They can make a menu so that you don’t know if it’s kosher or not kosher.”

Joseph Seminaro, executive director for Margaret Tietz, echoed Fassler when he said that the kitchen was necessary to accommodate the community.

“We couldn’t accommodate their needs that well at first because we had a small area that was a kosher kitchen,” he said. As the census showed more Jewish representation in the neighborhood, the need for a kitchen as such grew as well.

However, the center also obliges non-kosher requests. If a patient does not wish to eat what the kitchen offers, the center will provide them with food from an outside facility, and a place to enjoy their meal as well.

“If someone wants a cheeseburger, we’ll get them a cheeseburger,” said Seminaro, referring to the kosher rule that disallows mixing meat and dairy.

“We bend over backwards to accommodate everyone’s needs,” said Seminaro. “That’s the important thing here.”

A new name for Beth Abraham


| mchan@queenscourier.com

Starting a new future means branding a new name for one local leading health care provider.

Beth Abraham Family of Health Services will be renamed to CenterLight Health System, according to officials, in order to offer a broad continuum of services under one single brand. Starting a somewhat new identity, officials said, will make it easier for patients and their families to understand and access programs.

“We want to bring all of our programs and services together under one single unifying name and identity so that we could be recognizable in the market,” said CenterLight spokesperson Christie O’Toole. “We’re a leading long-term care provider in the metro area, but we found a lot of people didn’t know that because we’ve been operating under many logos.”

Now, all facilities within the new CenterLight Health System will be rebranded.

Although each program — like Margaret Tietz in Queens and Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation in Brooklyn — will keep their original names, each will add “an affiliate of CenterLight Health System” to the end of them.

However, Comprehensive Care Management (CCM) will change its name completely as well as move to Flushing. The new facility — now called CenterLight Healthcare — will be located at 37th Avenue, officials said. Expected to open in early spring, it will continue to be the system’s managed care organization.

With New York State mandating managed care for all long-term care patients beginning in April, CenterLight Healthcare will offer a number of managed care options for Medicare and Medicaid patients.

New brand of care in Queens at Margaret Tietz Center


| smosco@queenscourier.com

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While representatives in D.C. squabble over national health care, local health care received a major overhaul right here in Queens.

The Margaret Tietz Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Jamaica unveiled its newly-renovated care units, as well as an expanded rehab gym, at an event packed with elected officials, community members, facility employees and volunteers.

“We never closed down a bed, even with all these renovations and we’re really, really proud of what we have here,” said Director of Public Affairs Linda Spiegel at the grand reopening on Friday, September 23. “We are so proud of the fact that we’ve expanded our services to so many more communities. It’s a melting pot, the borough of Queens, and we’re here to service everybody the best way that we know how.”

That service now includes a thoroughly-renovated rehab gym, which nearly doubled in size and is loaded with state-of-the-art rehab equipment. In that gym, Margaret Tietz Executive Director Joseph Seminaro welcomed all visitors and officially opened the facility’s newest amenities.

“This is the culmination of a long and arduous construction project. And it’s the type of project that becomes difficult in terms of doing this kind of refurbishment while residents are still in the facility,” Seminaro said. “Mortar and bricks are wonderful and that’s what you’ve seen today, but it’s more the heart and soul of the staff that renders the best care.”

Queens legislators in attendance included Assemblymember Rory Lancman, Senator Toby Ann Stavisky, Assemblymember Grace Meng, Assemblymember David Weprin, Councilmember Peter Koo, Councilmember James Gennaro and Assemblymember Michael Simanowtiz. Many elected officials had family members who have benefited from the care at Margaret Tietz, including Meng, who recalled the attention her grandfather received at the facility.

“Like many of our colleagues in government, my grandfather too was here for a period of time and the sensitivity and compassion shown by the leadership and staff at Margaret Tietz was just overwhelming and very touching,” she said. “And it speaks volumes that so many of us have had family and loved ones here. What a wonderful asset this facility is for the entire Queens community.”