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Rome Health begins construction on new c-section surgical suite

By Traci DeLore (


From left, Rome Health Foundation Executive Director Chester DiBari III, Rome Health President/CEO AnneMarie Czyz, Assemblywoman Marianne Buttenschon, doctors Lauren Giustra and Ankur M. Desai, Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente, Jr., and Rome Mayor Jacqueline Izzo sign the beam to mark the start of construction on a new c-section suite and Rome Health. (Photo credit: Rome Health)

ROME, N.Y. — To celebrate the start of construction on its new Women’s Surgical Suite, Rome Health held a beam signing ceremony on Tuesday, which was also the 135th anniversary of the hospital.

Funding for the new $3.9 million dedicated c-section suite, being constructed in about 2,000 square feet of existing space adjacent to the fourth-floor maternity department, comes mainly from Oneida County’s investment of $3 million in federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds.

In expressing gratitude to the county for its investment, Rome Health President/CEO AnneMarie Czyz noted the new suite will make maternity care accessible to women in Rome and the surrounding rural communities. “The county’s investment will help us to accelerate our plans for expanding access to the best care out there, here in Rome,” she said in a news release.

Rome Health expects to complete construction in the spring of 2023. Along with adding a modern surgical suite, the project also provides capacity for additional growth in general surgery services by freeing up one of the hospital’s four operating rooms on the first floor.

“We are also pleased to announce that the Women’s Surgical Suite will be named in honor of Dr. Lauren Giustra, M.D., and Dr. Ankur Desai, M.D., two obstetrician/gynecologists who have served this community since they opened their practice in Rome more than 25 years ago,” Czyz said. “Throughout their careers, Drs. Giustra and Desai have maintained a singular focus on delivering the highest quality of care to those we serve.”

Both doctors serve as physician leaders of the hospital’s medical staff and members of the boards of the hospital and the Rome Health Foundation.

While its c-section rate is better than the state average, the hospital’s overall obstetrics volume grew 28.5 percent between 2020 and 2021. In 2021, 744 babies were born at Rome Health.

The nonprofit Rome Health provides primary, specialty, long-term care, and other services for patients of all ages. It is an affiliate of St. Joseph’s Health and an affiliated clinical site of New York Medical College.


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