The Chest Pain Observation Unit is the centerpiece of a 3,550-square-foot renovation to the hospital's first-floor Emergency Center scheduled to be finished next winter.
The facility is being paid for primarily through City Council funds secured by Councilman Daniel Dromm, who allocated $1 million in funding.
The remainder will be paid by the city-run hospital.
“Elmhurst Hospital has a long history of delivering exceptional and comprehensive medical services to our community,” said Dromm, who made a campaign promise last year to improve access to health care in his Central Queens district.
“Everyone gets the care that they deserve” there, he added.
Doctors at the 12-bed emergency room unit will diagnose and treat patients for chest pain before diverting them to the hospital or community-based health centers for further care.
It will also serve as the borough's only center for emergency angioplasties, an artery-clearing procedure used on patients with coronary heart disease that is less invasive than bypass surgery.
Officials said the unit would increase emergency room efficiency at the hospital.
The facility “will help us better identify patients with potential cardiac disease, as well as expedite their care,” said Dr. Stuart Kessler, director of the hospital's Department of Emergency Medicine.
The 545-bed hospital has one of the city's busiest emergency rooms, with 130,042 visits last year alone.