Translation By Lisa Darilis
At their fundraising event, Mt. Sinai executives and hospital personnel officially depicted the plan of expansion that is to take place in the current Astoria location. This expansion will not only save more lives, but it will also induce an economic boost for all of Queens.
According to the plan, the new hospital building will be erected behind the current building. The estimated cost for this project comes to 125 million dollars and is due to be ready for operation in 2016. In addition to opening up job opportunities in its construction process, it will also bring about more openings afterwards, creating an estimated 1000 new jobs. This will benefit the local economy with an estimated amount of 166 million dollars.
Mr. David L. Reich, interim president of Mt. Sinai, spoke to New Greek T.V. reporters and stated "This is a great moment for Mt. Sinai, as the foundation is being laid down for it to convert from a simple hospital to a big modern treatment facility with all the new medical technology predisposed for the 21st century."
For those present at this event, the fundamental theme was the fact that Astoria, for the first time, will have a well equipped major hospital beneficial to patients, who will be provided with the same medical services as the ones offered in the Mt. Sinai location in Manhattan. This comes at a time when a lot of hospitals and medical centers in Queens are closing for economic reasons.
"Not only will this hospital benefit senior citizens, who are plenty in number, but it will also give the community access to quality health care with great doctors, and that is important," stated N.Y. State Senator, Michael Giannaris.
Aravella Simotas, N.Y. State Assembly Member also commented on this event: "Years ago, my father had a cardiac episode and we had to take him to Mt. Sinai in Manhattan in order to get medical treatment. It is very important to us for such a hospital to be constructed in Astoria."
The Stavros Niarchos Foundation is responsible for funding a large and respectable amount towards this project. In addition, some very well known Greek doctors will be accessible to the members of the Greek community.
"The hospital is unbreakably connected with the Greek community, because it is located in Astoria, which is the heart of Hellenism. Besides the fact that Greeks have dispersed into other areas, such as Bayside, Astoria still remains the center of the Greek community. So, this extension of Mt. Sinai is very important to the Greeks, and we shouldn't forget that this is all due to the grant bestowed by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation," stated George Dangas, Professor of Medicine and Surgeon at the Department of Cardiology of Mt. Sinai Hospital.
Progressive Democratic candidate, Costas Constantinides, who is running for City Council, also shared his comment on this occasion: "I am very enthusiastic and I'm impatiently waiting to be present at the dedication in a few years, and I want to help support this hospital in whatever manner I could as an elected official, provided that I am chosen".
The new building will be 125,000 square feet and will contain all the proper clinical facilities and specialty services parallel to any up-to-date hospital.
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