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Ocean Medical Center in Brick unveiled 36 rooms for patients getting elective surgery.
MICHAEL L. DIAMOND

BRICK – Ocean Medical Center on Tuesday night unveiled an $18.5 million wing for elective surgeries in a bid to attract new patients and cut its costs.

The new floor features 36 private rooms that more closely would be associated with leisure than agony: speakers that can stream in music; couches for family members; sliding barn doors to bathrooms.

“We want our team to work more efficiently and effectively, and we want our patients to have a more comforting environment that addresses their fears and concerns,” said Dean Lin, president of Ocean Medical Center. “It allows them to heal in a proper way.”

Ocean Medical Center is part of Edison-based Hackensack Meridian Health. And it has been expanding fast. It has spent upwards of $100 million since 2014 on an expanded emergency department, cancer center and floor for elective surgeries. And it plans to begin work soon on renovating its existing facility, now 33 years old.

The overhaul comes as hospitals try to attract more patients, while coping with more pressure from Medicare and private insurers to deliver care more efficiently.

“It fits with how hospitals are being much more strategic” in their investments, said Gary Sokolow, an analyst at Fitch Ratings in New York.

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Ocean Medical Center executives said the new floor will help it keep up with growth. It performs about 1,000 total joint replacement surgeries a year, nearly twice as many as it did five years ago, said Ken Souchek, senior manager of operations.

And that could rise as the giant baby boomer generation ages….