AUSTINTOWN - Ground was broken Thursday morning for a new urology center that would bring specialized treatment for urology and prostate cancers that is not available within 500 miles, officials there said.
''It is a great day to have a celebration like this,'' said HM radiation oncologist Dr. Rashad El Dabh. ''This is a huge step forward in the treatment of cancer in the Mahoning Valley, and nothing can compare to it within the 500 miles around here.''
Construction for the $8.5 million, 13,000-square-foot structure to be located adjacent to St. Elizabeth Emergency and Diagnostic Center along Mahoning Avenue in west Austintown, is to officially get under way this month and is expected to be complete by March.
Tribune Chronicle / Brenda J. Linert
Several officials from Humility of Mary Health Partners, NEO Urology Associates Inc. and Advanced Urology Inc. turned dirt Thursday morning in a groundbreaking ceremony for a new urology health center in Austintown. Shown here are, from left, Dr. Eric Sevenson, radiation oncologist; Chuck Folkwein, senior vice president of ancillary services for HM; Dr. Robert R. Ricchiuti of NEO Urology Associates and HM president and CEO Robert Shroder.
Participants in the joint project include urology practices by Advanced Urology Inc. and NEO Urology Associates Inc., along with Humility of Mary Health Partners.
Dr. Mark A. Memo of NEO Urology said 186,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer nationally each year. About 700 of them are in the three-county Mahoning Valley.
''It's about precision and it's about accuracy,'' Memo said. ''Our goal is to make sure our patient gets state-of-the-art care.''
Officials said Austintown was chosen because of its central location to residents in the target markets of Trumbull, Mahoning and Columbiana counties.
The project also is being touted as unique because, once constructed, the building will be the first in the Mahoning Valley to be certified by the U.S. Green Building Council as environmentally and energy efficient, including all-electronic, paperless patient records.