The hospital that is now Mount Sinai Queens traces its roots to 1892. Astoria Hospital was originally located on Astoria Boulevard, where local residents made their way around town in horse-drawn trolleys. Doctors petitioned the Hospital Board of Managers for more space, and funds were raised through a public fair and the generous donations of local philanthropists. On May 4, 1896, a gala opening heralded Astoria Hospital’s brand-new Tudor building with sweeping views, on Crescent Street between 30th Avenue and 30th Road.
According to The New York Times, the Hospital was “a fitting monument to the women who built it.” Its doors were open to all patients, without regard to gender, creed or nationality. The Hospital’s goal was to be “a model of completeness and comfort.” The new facility included two operating rooms, separate wards for men and women, a dining room, a training school, apartments for nurses, and even a horse stable and ambulance in the rear.
Two years after moving to its new location, the hospital was forced to close due to the lack of City funding. In the ensuing years, doctors made unsuccessful attempts to revive the hospital. Then Marie Daly bought the hospital and opened Daly’s Astoria Sanatorium in 1925 as a maternity hospital and a place where patients could recuperate from long illnesses. Marie’s husband, Dr. John F. Daly, served as medical director during the sanatorium’s early years and in 1932, the incorporation was approved by the State under the name Daly’s Astoria Sanatorium.
A group of physicians purchased the hospital in 1949 and changed its name to Astoria General Hospital. The new owners embarked on an expansion to meet the growing needs of the local postwar community. In 1952, a new three-story building was constructed on 30th Avenue, where Mount Sinai Queens stands today, connected to the original building. In 1964, three additional floors were added to the building, bringing the total number of hospital beds to 235. The hospital thrived throughout the 1960s. In 1965, Astoria General served more patients and delivered more babies than any other private hospital in Queens.
In 1972 a group of investors bought the Hospital and took over its operation. The Hospital continued to expand during the 1970s and ‘80s. In 1985, the Ambulatory Surgery Center was built at 25-25 30th Road and four years later the Hospital opened the Center for Laser Vascular Surgery, the first such facility in Queens, Brooklyn or Long Island.
The changing economics of health care made survival as a stand-alone hospital increasingly difficult. In 1993, the Hospital became an affiliate of The Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan and changed its name to Western Queens Community Hospital the following year. In 1999, the Hospital was purchased by the prestigious Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan. It is the only community hospital to bear the Mount Sinai name.
Since joining Mount Sinai, hospital management has worked consistently to modernize the facility, introduce state-of-the-art technology and attract high-caliber physicians and nurses who are among the best in their fields. Bringing physicians, resources and knowledge from Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan has been integral to our efforts to improve the quality of health care in Queens.
Mount Sinai Queens Today
Mount Sinai Queens has come a long way since its founding as Astoria Hospital in the days of horse-drawn trolleys. Today Mount Sinai Queens is a 235-bed facility with nearly 500 attending physicians and more than 300 registered nurses.
In 2010 the Hospital oversaw:
- 10,614 discharges
- 63,446 outpatient visits
- 49,697 emergency room visits
Although medical care has changed immeasurably since Astoria Hospital first opened its doors in 1892, the hospital’s commitment to the health and well-being of our patients and the community at large remains unwavering.
Our thanks to Mount Sinai Archives and Records Management Division of the Levy Library, writer Alice Hurley and the Greater Astoria Historical Society for research assistance.