Pr. George’s Hospital Lands More State Money to Help Fund Expansion

WASHINGTON BUSINESS JOURNAL: Luminis Health is close to breaking ground on its Prince George’s County women’s health tower after receiving a significant capital injection from the state of Maryland.

Doctors Community Medical Center, the health system’s Lanham hospital, has secured $19 million from the state’s latest budget to help fuel the $170 million campus project — a four-story pavilion for inpatient obstetrics services, labor and delivery, and postpartum care.

The latest funding comes on top of $7 million Luminis received from the state last year, and is nearly double the amount it had originally been pre-authorized for this year, a system spokesperson told me. “Luminis Health is grateful to state and county leaders for the additional money,” he said.

Luminis is slated to receive another $10 million in next year’s budget, “but similar to this year, it will be subject to the House and Senate’s final approval during next year’s legislative session,” the spokesperson said.

Lawmakers approved the funding in the waning days of 2024legislative session, which ended April 8. Overall, Luminis isseeking $100 million from Maryland “to support this majorinitiative to expand access and care” in the county, thespokesperson said.

Luminis is also seeking some federal aid to help pay for the$170 million project, and recently submitted a request for $4.5 million through Congressionally Directed Spending. The remainder of the project would be funded by “substantial investments from the health system,” the spokesperson said.

The system is now in the final planning and permitting process so it can begin site work on the Lanham campus this summer, when it plans to hold a groundbreaking ceremony. Luminis is finalizing a contract with a construction firm, the spokesperson said, declining to disclose details until that deal is inked.

Site development first involves updating utility infrastructurefor water, electric and wastewater systems, as well astelecommunications, and changing traffic flow throughout the campus. Plans then call for construction of a 350-space parking garage, then moving a loading dock to create space for the pavilion. Construction on that pavilion is expected to start in late 2025. Per that timeline, it would open in 2028.

The project is a big piece of a larger $300 million campusexpansion over the next several years. That work will also include renovations to the hospital’s clinical infrastructure, surgical suites and support services, as well as a new pharmacy, cafeteria, more visitor-facing services, and a redesigned front entrance and lobby.

Luminis will fund the $300 million project from a variety of sources, including cash flow from operations, proceeds from debt financing and philanthropy. It has already invested more than $85 million in the Lanham campus since acquiring the medical center in 2019.

In December, Maryland state regulators approved Luminis Health’s certificate of need application, which gave the health system he go-ahead to establish the obstetrics service line at the hospital. That’s a big deal for residents of Prince George’s County, where women’s health care is lacking — and where the maternal mortality rate exceeds the national average.

Prince George’s County has just two acute-care hospitals with obstetrics: MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center and University of Maryland Capital Region Medical Center.

Adventist HealthCare Fort Washington Medical Center, like doctors, does not have obstetrics. That hospital received some state funding last week to build a replacement hospital that would include obstetrics services.

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