GOSHEN – The Orange County Medical Examiner’s morgue and forensic operations has two months to move out of Orange Regional Medical Center, where it has been operating. The hospital needs the space.
As a temporary solution, the county has rented a large mobile facility placed behind the emergency services building to serve for autopsies and as a morgue.
Medical Examiner Dr. Charles Catanese said he can work with those facilities until a more permanent location is identified.
Health Commissioner Dr. Jean Hudson suggested while the county will move into the temporary facilities in the next several weeks, it should look to the future.
“I personally think the planning for that, or looking into that, or what the county wants to afford needs to start sooner rather than later,” she said.
Hudson said the county bought itself some time She noted it took Dutchess County three to four years to plan for its new medical examiner facilities after it ran into a similar situation when Vassar Medical Center took back the space it was using at that facility.
Orange County Executive Edward Diana said it is costing some $500,000 to rent to own the temporary buildings and fit them for the specific needs. To build a permanent facility would cost about $5 million, he estimated.