A NEW WOMEN AND CHILDREN’S TOWER, CENTERS OF EXCELLENCE FOR HEARTCARE AND ENDOSCOPY
With the aim of taking an integrated approach to caring for women, children and premature babies, University Health System began planning this year for a new Women and Children’s Tower at University Hospital.
The $390 million project is the second phase of the Health System’s Capital Improvement Program.
In addition to the new tower, the plan also finishes out shell space in the Sky Tower to include a new heart and vascular center equipped to provide the latest and most advanced heart and stroke therapies, and an advanced endoscopy center.
“University Health System serves one of the fastest-growing regions in the country,” said George B. Hernández Jr., president and chief executive officer of University Health System. “This next phase of expansion will help us meet the future needs of our patients and provide these very important programs with facilities that are as beautiful and advanced as those in our Sky Tower.”
Bexar County Commissioners Court in September approved a financing plan for the $390 million project, which will be funded through the sale of certificates of obligation, capital reserves and a shift in some budgetary priorities.
The project will not require a property tax increase. The opening of the Sky Tower in 2014 and the expansion of the historic Robert B. Green Campus went a long way toward creating state-of-the-art clinical spaces and modern patient rooms for most of University Health System’s signature programs, including heart surgery, neurosciences, transplantation and trauma. But unmet needs remained — partly because of the unanticipated return of UT Health pediatric specialists and their patients to University Health System after the Sky Tower was nearly complete.
The new tower will enable the pediatric unit on the seventh floor of the Sky Tower to become an adult inpatient unit as originally intended, allowing adult medical-surgical programs room for future growth as well. The most visible piece of the project will be the 250-bed Women and Children’s Tower, to be built alongside the Sky Tower.
The idea is to create synergy between programs and services for both women and children.
The new outpatient Heart and Vascular Institute and an Advanced Endoscopy Center would occupy 43,000 square feet of shell space on the first floor of the Sky Tower.
In addition to providing a high level of care for those in our community, these projects will strengthen the training programs of UT Health San Antonio and its ability to attract and retain highly qualified physicians
— who in turn will train future generations of physician experts, building a larger and stronger network of providers in South Texas.
The estimated completion date of the Women and Children’s Tower is 2022.