14 July 2021

With a primary goal of improving lives in local communities by enhancing access to high-quality health services for all, the three hospitals are being designed and will be constructed and fully outfitted through an exclusive grant from the Foundation as part of the SNF Health Initiative.

Planning for the three hospitals is proceeding at pace, and, based on the current timeline, they will be completed and delivered to the people of Greece before the end of 2025. This was the fourth round of town hall meetings held since June 2019. From the outset of the Health Initiative, SNF has been committed to maintaining an open dialogue and to listening to local communities throughout the development and implementation of projects and programs, with the aim of ensuring transparency and sharing regular updates with the public—the recipients and end users of the projects.

Public participation in all three events was very high, and the level of engagement was encouraging. During the discussions, detailed information was shared on the evolution of the hospitals’ architectural plans and clinical programs, with emphasis on the significant enrichment of medical services and infrastructure that arose through a recent round of consultations with the local medical communities.

Specifically, additional medical capabilities now incorporated in the design of the new hospitals of Komotini and Sparta include provisions for magnetic resonance imaging (3 Tesla MRI), breast imaging, cardiovascular facilities, and an increased number of operating rooms. For the new General Hospital of Komotini, new elements relating to nuclear medicine, as well as therapeutic exercise and rehabilitation, were brought forward. Following robust cooperation between the Hellenic Ministry of Health and the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki Medical School, discussion on the new SNF University Pediatric Hospital of Thessaloniki focused on new clinical additions, a significant infrastructure expansion for the planned model Center for Child and Adolescent Mental Health, and the creation of new space for university research and teaching facilities.

In addition, SNF and the representatives from the Greek state informed participants about progress in the licensing process and answered questions concerning the commitments and infrastructure projects undertaken by the state to connect the hospitals to roads and public utility networks, as well as for their future operation in line with standard models of patient care and space management.

All three projects are being designed by renowned architect Renzo Piano and Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW), designers of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC). The new hospitals will exclusively feature single and double rooms, and will be equipped with state-of the-art medical equipment, providing the necessary tools to the medical and nursing staff to ensure high-quality health services for inpatients and outpatients. Aiming to create therapeutic centers modeled after the ancient Asclepieions, the hospitals will be surrounded by gardens, which will be accessible to patients and their families, supporting the treatment process.

The hospitals’ design, construction, and operation will incorporate the sustainability principles of the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) program. At the same time, the new facilities will also enable the development of modern digital infrastructure for clinical services, sustainable and efficient hospital management and maintenance, and interconnection with other partner health entities.