George Washington University Hospital will take over operations of a planned hospital expected to replace an embattled city-owned hospital in Washington, D.C.
Announced Friday, District officials said GW Hospital signed a letter of intent to manage and operate a planned acute care community hospital and health services complex to replace United Medical Center, expected to open in 2023. The District budgeted more than $300 million in capital for the construction of a new hospital, including a parking garage. GW Hospital committed to investing $75 million over 10 years.
Earlier this year, George Washington Medical Faculty Associates—which is the largest independent physicians practice in the Washington area—took over management of UMC's hospitalists and emergency department physicians.
The 371-bed GW Hospital is part of healthcare giant Universal Health Services and is affiliated with George Washington University. It is located in downtown Washington not far from the White House. UMC is a 354-bed, aging facility located across the city in a traditionally underserved part of town.
The new hospital will be sizably smaller with 100 to 125 beds and a focus on offering outpatient care including urgent care, outpatient surgery, diagnostic imaging and physician offices, officials have said. The new hospital is planned for the campus of St. Elizabeths East, which is the site of the first federally operated psychiatric hospital in the U.S. and a focal point for city economic development projects like a 118,000-square-foot sports and entertainment arena and the new headquarters of the Department of Homeland Security.
The new hospital would become part of the GW Hospital integrated health system with the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences and GW MFA serving as the academic and physician arm of the new complex, respectively. It would be the first new hospital to open in the District since GW Hospital opened its Foggy Bottom hospital nearly 20 years ago.
“This new hospital will be part of our larger plan to rethink how we get Washingtonians connected to the care they need, when they need it," D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said in a statement.
The District and GW Hospital will enter an exclusive negotiating period to draft a formal partnership agreement which will need approval by the D.C. Council.