Written by GRISELDA D. RAMIREZ, The Californian
January 16, 2012 -- Five members of the D'Arrigo family donned hard hats and wielded sledgehammers to smash holes in a wall on the second floor of Natividad Medical Center in Salinas last week as they launched the construction of an expanded family specialty center.
D'Arrigo Bros. Co. and the D'Arrigo family donated $250,000 to the Natividad Medical Foundation. The produce company's gift will nearly double the D'Arrigo Family Specialty Services capacity to 30 exam and procedure rooms for obstetrics, cardiology, nephrology, general and plastic surgery, orthopedics and pediatrics.
Care for high-risk infants includes a synagis clinic, the only one in Monterey County to treat respiratory syncytial virus, the most common respiratory virus in infants and children, hospital officials said.
"I went on a hospital tour with my parents (two years ago) and I went back for a second trip. I was so impressed with the motivation from the doctors, nurses and staff. I started asking them what they needed and, boy, they had a long list," said John D'Arrigo. "We were very interested in what the specialty clinic did but it is too small for what they do."
After construction and remodeling are completed, the family specialty center will have an expanded capacity for more than 32,000 patient visits for babies, children, women and families each year, said Linda Ford, chief executive officer and president of the hospital's foundation.
Ford said the D'Arrigo gift will enable families to get treated in Salinas instead of having to travel to hospitals in San Francisco for medical services Natividad will provide with the expanded center.
D'Arrigo said his parents, Andy and Phyllis D'Arrigo, "have been a great inspiration."
"My parents have always inspired us to give. That's how we (including his four siblings) were raised," he said.
Ford said most of the patients who are treated at the hospital are farm workers or come from families in the agricultural industry.
"We are so thankful for what the Valley has done for our family. We want to give back to farm workers and families that have these health care needs that Natividad (addresses)," D'Arrigo said.
"Natividad, with its expanding health care needs, is a perfect way to give back to show our concern and our gratitude for those who helped build our family business."
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