DeTar invests $20M in expansion project
Feb. 13, 2018 at 9:51 p.m.
Updated Feb. 14, 2018 at 6 a.m.
The former Juan Linn Elementary School property will soon be the site of a new intensive care unit at DeTar Hospital Navarro.
Community leaders and hospital employees donned hard hats and picked up shovels at a ceremony Tuesday afternoon to announce the $20 million hospital expansion project.
Gary Malaer, chief executive officer of DeTar Healthcare System, told attendees that with the construction of a new ICU, the hospital will increase the number of critical care beds from 20 to 30.
The project also allows for two additional beds to be built onto each of the three ICU wings when needed.
Construction on the 3,000- square-foot expansion is scheduled to be completed within one year, Malaer said.
He said during past several months, the hospital's leadership team and the Board of Trustees reviewed the needs of patients and identified an opportunity to increase access to services.
"Since 2014, the hospital's ICU has cared for a growing number of patients each year," he said. "The demand for ICU services continues to grow in Victoria and the surrounding area."
ICU Nurse Manager Stephanie Tucker said there are days when the hospital is at capacity.
"This is going to improve the quality of care to the area," she said.
The new ICU will create a more efficient workflow, Tucker said.
Dr. Juan Llompart, ICU medical director at DeTar, said the hospital will also receive cutting-edge, state-of-the-art equipment.
"It's just keeping up with the times," he said. "We'll have anything they have in the big cities. We are going to be able to bring that here and improve patient outcomes, which is ultimately the goal."
Hospital officials said during the past two years, DeTar has invested more than $35 million to expand services, add technology and replace equipment.
Llompart said he hopes the new facility will attract quality doctors to seek work in Victoria.
"We're very proud," he said about the expansion. "It's a good investment that DeTar is making, and it's good for Victoria."