Digital Town Hall Meetings by SNF for New Hospitals in Komotini, Thessaloniki and Sparta as part of the Health Initiative
10 DECEMBER 2020

As part of its Health Initiative, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) organized a series of online town hall meetings on Thursday, December 10th with the local communities of Komotini, Thessaloniki and Sparta. With the public’s participation, the events reviewed the progress of the projects to create the new SNF General Hospital of Komotini, the SNF University Pediatric Hospital of Thessaloniki, and the new SNF General Hospital of Sparta, which are designed, and will be constructed and fully outfitted, through grants from SNF.

This was the third iteration of the meetings, since June 2019, and though they could not take place in person due to the pandemic, the discussions still took place online, demonstrating SNF’s commitment to maintaining open dialogue about the projects. The continuation of these fruitful dialogues with the local community and the general public are an integral part of SNF’s philosophy to ensure transparency and regular updates for citizens throughout the entire development and implementation of the Initiative’s projects and programs.

SNF Co-President Andreas Dracopoulos stated, "The goal of the Health Initiative, led by the three new hospitals, is to support the public health system to the best of our ability. Access to quality health services should not be for a lucky few, but for all. These projects were created to improve the lives of the local communities, and once completed, these hospitals will belong to them. That is why their voice is so important. Guided by transparency, the exchange of views and sound information are key elements of the process we follow. For us at SNF, the process is as important as the final product.”

The three grants for the construction of the hospitals, totaling €321 million, are part of SNF’s Health Initiative, with a total budget of almost €400 million. The Health Initiative includes additional infrastructure projects, the supply of specialized equipment to public hospitals across Greece, two airplanes and two helicopters for EKAV’s air ambulance services, as well as support of educational programs for doctors and nurses, aiming to strengthen medical and nursing care throughout Greece and, by extension, the health of Greek residents.

During the discussions, SNF presented the vision and philosophy behind the design of the three hospitals, undertaken by internationally renowned architect Renzo Piano and the architectural firm Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW) and Betaplan, creators of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC). Furthermore, SNF provided updates about the progress of licensing and planning the clinical services to be offered by each hospital.
The new state-of-the-art hospitals will be equipped with cutting edge medical diagnostic equipment, providing the necessary tools to medical and nursing staff, and consequently providing high-quality health services to inpatients and outpatients. The three hospitals will exclusively include single and double treatment rooms. Paying special attention to the surrounding areas and implementing a treatment model based on the ancient “Asclepieions’” standards, the hospitals will be surrounded by gardens accessible to patients and their relatives to encourage the healing process.

The design, construction, and operation of the hospitals will incorporate the green sustainability principles of the LEED program. At the same time, the new facilities will enable the development of modern digital infrastructure for clinical services, sustainable and efficient management and maintenance of the hospital, and interconnectivity with partner health units.

According to the existing timetable, the three hospitals will be delivered to the Greek people in 2025.

To further enrich the new SNF General Hospital of Komotini’s medical services, and following discussions with the local medical community in recent months, the SNF Board of Directors recently approved support for the provision of a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machine, a Breast Imaging Department, a Cath Lab, a Gamma Camera machine, three additional operating rooms, and a space for therapeutic practice and rehabilitation, with additional design, infrastructure and equipment costs of up to €5.5 million. SNF has submitted these extensions of the Hospital’s clinical program to the Ministry of Health.

Online Presentation for the new SNF General Hospital of Komotini

The SNF University Pediatric Hospital of Thessaloniki will be the first pediatric hospital in Northern Greece, and aims to be a model healthcare facility for the wider southeastern European region. Among other things, through the initiative of SNF in collaboration with the Medical School of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, enrichment for the hospital’s existing clinical Hospital is under investigation along with other potential collaborations.

Online Presentation for the SNF University Pediatric Hospital of Thessaloniki

Following discussions between SNF and the existing Sparta Hospital, and as part of the investigation into further support for the new hospital’s medical services, the SNF Board of Directors recently approved support to upgrade a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machine from 1.5 to 3 Tesla, the addition of a Breast Imaging Department and a Cath Lab, as well as the addition of two extra operation rooms, with additional design, infrastructure and equipment costs of up to €5.5 million. SNF has submitted these extensions of the hospital’s clinical program to the Ministry of Health.

Online Presentation for the new SNF General Hospital of Sparta

The SNF will continue organizing the town hall meetings twice a year.