Southwest Austin | Dripping Springs - June 2022


System Growth

St. David’s HealthCare, which announced in February an expansion plan totaling nearly $1 billion. The plan includes opening new hospitals in 2024 in Kyle and Leander—two cities St. David’s President and CEO David Huƒstutler character- ized as “rapidly growing.” While the Leander hos- pital will be located on St. David’s existing property, which already includes a free-standing emergency department and medical o‹ce building, the system is working to purchase land for the Kyle hospital. Because building and expanding hospitals takes several years, Huƒstutler said St. David’s tries to fore- cast where the demand for health care services will be. “We know if we started today, there will be a lot more growth in these communities over the next two and half years as we’re trying to get this capacity online, so we have to start early in anticipation of what it’ll look like over that horizon,” Huƒstutler said. Employment changes

In the next 20 years, the population of Hays and Wil- liamson counties is projected to approximately double to 500,000 and 1.2 million resi- dents, respectively, according to data compiled by the Austin Chamber of Commerce. Travis County is expected to total 1.8 million residents by 2040. Davis said this growth was top of mind when Ascension Texas completed expansions at Ascension Seton William- son Hospital in Round Rock and Ascension Seton Hays Hospital in Kyle in February. Ascension is also planning to open a women’s tower at Ascension Seton Medical Cen- ter Austin in fall 2024. Health care leaders also cited a desire to further develop their services and care for underserved popula- tions as other reasons to grow. Dr. Rob Watson, chief med- ical o‹cer for the Greater Austin region at Baylor Scott & White Health, said two of the three new hospitals it opened in 2019 were located in cities that previously did not have a hospital—Buda and

NEW CONSTRUCTION Dell Children’s Medical Center North Number of new beds: 36 Size: 187,000 sq. ft. Cost: $700 million (total pediatric investment) Estimated completion: April 2023

P›ugerville. “We look for opportuni- ties where we think there are growing health care needs that are not being met in the community,” Watson said. Huƒstutler said the 80-bed behavioral, or mental health, hospital St. David’s is building near the North Austin Medical Center is an example of the system adding to its services. He said access to behavioral health care is lacking through- out the nation and state, but he said the northern portion of the Central Texas commu- nity has even fewer available resources. The $33.8 million facility will open in 2024. St. David’s is also investing Seton and Dell Children’s, has two expansions underway and is building a pediatric hospital in Northwest Austin. ASCENSION TEXAS The Ascension Texas system, which includes Ascension









Ascension Seton Medical Center Austin Number of new beds: 28 (new women’s tower) Space added: 282,000 sq. ft. Cost: $320 million Estimated completion: fall 2024

Dell Children’s Medical Center Central Number of new beds: 96 (fourth patient tower) Space added: 165,000 sq. ft. Cost: $700 million (total

pediatric investment) Estimated completion: November 2022

in other expansions at its North and South Austin and

facility will start with 36 beds and have room to grow, Dell Children’s President Christo- pher Born said. “The travel time to get down to Dell Children’s Cen- tral in the Mueller neighbor- hood was getting extremely elongated, so our thought process of building the North hospital was to provide increased access to the expert care Dell Children’s is known for,” Born said. Dell Children’s is also increasing capacity at its main hospital by building a 96-bed fourth patient tower and expanding its neonatal inten- sive care unit. Texas Children’s Hospital is building the other pediatric facility in Northwest Austin.

Round Rock hospitals. Prioritizing pediatrics

Davis said the growth of Central Texas has caused an especially sharp increase in demand for pediatric care. He and other health care o‹cials noted how young families are moving to the area for employment opportunities. In an eƒort to meet this need, two diƒerent systems are building pediatric hospi- tals in North Austin about a mile away from one another. Slated to open in April 2023, Dell Children’s Medical Center North will be located near the intersection of Avery Ranch Boulevard and 183A Toll. The


17,500 18,750 20,000

While the population of Hays, Travis and Williamson counties has increased by more than 15%, the number of hospital workers decreased except in Williamson County.

0 1,250 2,500 3,750 5,000 6,250


Travis County Hays County

Williamson County




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