BHC President/CEO Mark Faulkner Shares Plans for Replacement Hospital
By this time, I hope you have heard the very exciting news from Baptist Health Care. We are planning the development of a full scale main hospital at the southwest corner of the Brent Lane and I-110 intersection in Pensacola and a reimagining of our current Baptist Hospital campus.
Our legacy at Baptist is one of action that began more than 68 years ago with our founders’ bold vision to bring more modern health care to the community. That legacy has guided us throughout our history, and it’s also guided our Mission of helping people throughout life’s journey.
A lot has changed in the world – and in health care – since Baptist Hospital first opened in 1951. When our main hospital was first built, the polio vaccine had not yet been discovered. In the 1950s, there were 34,000 people who died annually of tuberculosis. Penicillin was not yet mass produced and distributed. In the 1950s, having a baby or dealing with a hernia or gall bladder surgery kept you in the hospital for a week. All patient records were handwritten and manually filed. The life expectancy for men at the time was 66 years old and for women it was 71.
We’ve come so far since then. Countless medical and technological advancements have drastically improved our quality of life. Vaccines and methods for early detection have helped prevent or reduce life-threatening illnesses and conditions. Most new mothers are released from the hospital with their newborns after just two days. Minimally invasive procedures are now the norm and are performed in an outpatient setting, eliminating the need for an overnight hospital stay. And the life expectancy for men has grown to 76 years old and for women it is now 81.
As the health care industry has changed, and as our community and its needs have changed, so too have we. From a single location on E Street, we have grown to serve you through three hospitals, four medical parks, a broad physician network, and Andrews Institute for Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine. And we have grown to provide more than just health care. We have responded to the needs of the region and beyond by providing critically important human services through the Lakeview Center, FamiliesFirst Network and Global Connections to Employment. Throughout Baptist Health Care, we had 1.1 million encounters with you and other members of our growing community in the last year alone. Just like our founders so many decades ago, we continue to think about how health and life will evolve over the next 68 years and beyond. We continue to plan for and invest in the future to better serve you.
The decision to build a new main hospital is the result of years of facility master planning. This new hospital positions us to implement health care innovations well into the future. This is a significant investment in our community. The new hospital will keep us close to our current main hospital location and offer greater access, enhanced technology and a concentration of related services that will make it easier and more convenient to deliver better care to you and all we serve. The initial footprint of the new facility is expected to be just over 650,000 square feet of modern patient care space. We expect the investment in the new facility to exceed $550 million and to have significant economic impact for the community during construction and after opening, which we expect to be in summer of 2023. We are incredibly excited to be contributing to the economic growth and improvement of quality of life in the region.
And we have more good news. As plans are made to transition the main hospital to the new facility, Baptist will evaluate and determine which programs, services and departments are best suited to remain at our current E Street location. Discussion with community partners is underway to determine the range of services outside the conventional hospital setting that could be offered there to better serve local needs.
I hope you are excited about this announcement. This investment represents our commitment to serve you - the people of Northwest Florida and South Alabama - now and for many generations to come.
Please visit our website at eBaptistHealthCare.org to stay informed about this transformation. As further plans develop, we will update you.
We thank you for the honor of serving you.
Baptist Health Care is a not-for-profit health care organization based in northwest Florida that is committed to helping people throughout life's journey. The organization is a proud member of the Mayo Clinic Care Network. Baptist continuously strives to be a national leader in quality and service. Baptist Health Care includes three hospitals, four medical parks, Andrews Institute for Orthopaedic & Sports Medicine and a large network of primary care and specialty physicians. Baptist Health Care is one of the largest non-governmental employers in northwest Florida.
Baptist Health Care ● Baptist Hospital ● Gulf Breeze Hospital ● Jay Hospital ● Baptist Medical Parks Airport, Nine Mile, Navarre and Pace ● Andrews Institute ● Baptist Medical Group ● Baptist Heart & Vascular Institute ● Mayo Clinic Care Network