Scoopy’s Notebook, Week of August 2, 2012

WASN’T USED SO URGENTLY: North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System closed its urgent-care center at 121 W. 20th St. on Fri., June 13, after just 16 months of operation because it was “clearly underused and unnecessary,” a spokesperson for the medical group said. The center, which operated at night and on weekends in a 4,000-square-foot basement on the lower level of the VillageCare Adult Clinic, had an average of two patients a day since in March of last year. The VillageCare clinic, which is open weekdays during business hours, continues to serve the community, a VillageCare spokesperson said last week. The closing of the North Shore-L.I.J. service on W. 20th St. does not stop the medical group from proceeding with its $110 million plan for a free-standing, 24/7 emergency department and comprehensive community healthcare facility in the former St. Vincent’s Hospital O’Toole Pavilion on Seventh Ave. at W. 12th St. across from the former hospital property. North Shore-L.I.J. spent $2.3 million to open its the 20th St. center in response to the outcry over the closing of St. Vincent’s eight blocks away, a spokesperson for the group said. The round-the-clock emergency department and comprehensive health center in the O’Toole building is scheduled to open in 2014.

STICKING WITH THE BEAN: The East Village’s nocturnal “sidewalk gum artist,” James Wechsler, who we profiled in April, might not have gotten his wish yet — a gallery show. But he might have done even better by getting an exhibit in the new Bean coffee shop on First Ave. at Ninth St. The super-popular cafe is hosting a small exhibition of Wechsler’s series of paintings based on 19th-century scientific engravings. He hung his artwork there in June through an organization called Indiewalls. Congrats!

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