The donation agreement between the Ministry of Health, the General Anti-Cancer/Oncology Hospital of Athens "Aghios Savvas" and Mrs Marianna I. Latsis, the donor, was officially approved by Law 4159/2013 (Official Government Gazette A 127/2013). The agreement provided for the complete rebuilding of the 6th IKA Oncology Hospital and its transformation into a state-of-the-art One Day Clinic (ODC) for oncology diseases.
The handover ceremony of the state-of-the-art One Day Clinic “Nikos Kourkoulos” took place today, 16 January 2015. The Clinic was handed over by Mrs Marianna I. Latsis to Mr Makis Voridis, Minister of Health and Mr Nikos Faldamis, Director of the "Aghios Savvas" Hospital. The Clinic meets international standards, and it is very well organised and equipped in order to provide high quality health services.
The One Day Clinic “Nikos Kourkoulos” is made up of 6 floors, a ground floor and 3 basements, it has a total surface area of 4,000 m2 and a capacity of 46 beds, and it is an integral part of the General Anti-Cancer/Oncology Hospital of Athens "Aghios Savvas". It was rebuilt and equipped based on specifications that meet the operational requirements of a state-of-the-art One Day Clinic, with the aim of improving the building where patients are treated and optimising the effectiveness of the medical and nursing staff.
The health services offered have been upgraded, since it is expected that 30,000 patients will be admitted per year at the One Day Clinic “Nikos Kourkoulos” and 3,800 surgical procedures will be performed. The patients will be admitted in the morning, they will then undergo chemotherapy or a surgical procedure and will be discharged on the same day. Therefore, the ODC “Nikos Kourkoulos” helps to free up beds in the main building of the General Anti-Cancer/Oncology Hospital of Athens "Aghios Savvas", where more complex oncology cases can be dealt with.
The institution of day care is very widespread in most countries. Based on international experience, the operation of one-day clinics significantly improves the quality of health services and is one of the most effective practices for the optimisation of expenses and the proper use of material and human resources in the health sector.
Mrs Marianna I. Latsis stated that:
“During the 6 years I spent with Nikos in various hospitals, I deeply experienced the anxiety felt by patients and their partners, the pain, the prayer, the hope that is born, fades away and is then reborn, the dimly lit waiting rooms, the superhuman efforts made by doctors and nurses as well as the inappropriateness and inadequacy of the infrastructure. I deeply experienced all of the above, and since he never gave up, by making this donation –which I would describe as an act of duty, redemption and solidarity– I wanted to contribute as much as I can to the protection and respect of dignity in life and in sickness. I feel blessed and lucky that, through this act of responsibility and love, I can help in the national effort to improve the National Health System. It is with great joy and honour that today we are handing over the ODC “Nikos Kourkoulos”, to the Ministry of Health and the "Aghios Savvas" Hospital, hoping that it will be used to the benefit of thousands of patients who suffer from oncology diseases. We believe that the Clinic can become a modern workplace and training location and hope that it will operate in an exemplary manner and will be a new model of medical care both for Attica and the entire country. Everyone involved in this project put in a lot of love, care and effort. What is probably even more important than the project itself, is the power of working together and being united towards a society of unity, solidarity, cooperation and complementarity. I truly believe that this donation is a donation from many people and not from just one person.”
In his greeting during the handover ceremony, Mr Makis Voridis, Minister of Health, stressed that:
“The inauguration of the One Day Clinic “Nikos Kourkoulos” is a special moment for the "Aghios Savvas" Hospital, the National Health System and, of course, our society. It is a project of major importance, which will be in the first line of the battle against cancer. Citizens now have at their disposal a state-of-the-art structure, which was completed in just one and a half years, thanks to the significant donation made by Mrs Marianna I. Latsis. She turned her pain into power and made this remarkable donation for which we thank her. Day care is a modern tool, which is used by developed health systems around the world in order to provide high quality health services to citizens. At the same time, health outflows are improved and expenses are cut back. I am sure that the One Day Clinic “Nikos Kourkoulos”, which will play an important role in the National Health System, will become a model for similar efforts to improve health services to the benefit of citizens and society.”
Mr Nikos Faldamis, Director of the General Anti-Cancer/Oncology Hospital of Athens "Aghios Savvas", welcomed everyone present at the ODC “Nikos Kourkoulos”, which he described as an ornament, and said that this day is special because such an important project is being delivered. In order to highlight the real value of the project for citizens, he said that:
“Aghios Savvas is known to some as the biggest oncology hospital in the country; for others, it may have a more important and emotional place in their hearts, in their lives, and some even call it ‘home’. The ODC “Nikos Kourkoulos” is a model clinic, which was rebuilt, renovated and equipped from scratch, based on the standards of a modern One Day Clinic, with the aim not only of limiting expenses but, most importantly, of improving health services and reducing the psychological burden on patients.”
Further Information on the One Day Clinic ''Nikos Kourkoulos'' are available here.