Bond Program Update: Phase I Plans Revealed
Updated: Jun 3, 2021
A new psychiatric emergency center, one or more medical homes and an ambulatory surgery center are all included in Phase I of plans to expand JPS Health Network.
According to a conceptual drawing recently released by project manager Broaddus-LeVis, the psychiatric emergency center would be part of a new behavioral health hospital building to be built near the corner or West Allen and South Jennings avenues in Fort Worth. The location is next to where the Trinity Springs Pavilion behavioral health hospital now stands.
To clear the way for the construction, JPS has already begun a project to relocate its Hemphill Behavioral Health Outpatient Clinic from the corner of Hemphill Street and West Allen Avenue north on Hemphill past Rosedale Street. The Hemphill clinic will be leveled to create parking after the new outpatient behavioral health center opens in August, according to Zelia Baugh, Executive Vice President of Behavioral Health. Then the new behavioral health hospital and psychiatric emergency room can be built on land along West Allen Avenue that currently serves as hospital employee parking.
The ambulatory surgery center would be built on the north side of the campus on what is now a parking lot at the corner of South Main Street and West Magnolia Avenue. Meanwhile, a central utility plant (CUP) would be built on the east side of the campus to support the new patient towers and other facilities..
Broaddus-LeVis leaders said the next steps in the process of constructing proposed medical homes will be to hold a series of meetings with JPS leaders and members of the communities to assess needs. Meanwhile, prospective sites are being evaluated.
Medical homes have been a top priority of some members of the Tarrant County Commissioners Court. Commissioner Gary Fickes was a vocal proponent of the newest one, JPS Medical Home Northeast Tarrant, opened in Euless in October 2018.
Beyond the offerings of a clinic, where a patient comes to have a specific need addressed and then goes on their way, a medical home is a care delivery model where patients receive comprehensive services to address their physical and behavioral health. Primary, preventative, wellness, acute and chronic care are all available in one central location. Care is patient-centered and coordinated among a team of doctors, nurses, assistants, pharmacists, educators and other providers.
The 35,000-square-foot Medical Home Northeast Tarrant offers primary care, women’s health, behavioral health, dental, optometry, laboratory and radiology care. In addition to pharmacy services, it is the first JPS facility to offer a drive-up window for prescriptions. Combining services encourages coordination of care among providers and engagement by patients, who no longer need to travel to multiple locations for diagnostics such as X-rays and lab tests. Patients with diabetes, for example, can see a physician, get blood drawn, have their eyes checked and pick up prescriptions in the same location, increasing the likelihood that all preventative measures will be taken.
“I am so excited about what we are able to do here because we are truly moving from a clinic to a medical home,” Fickes said at the ribbon cutting for the new building. “People will be able to come here when they have a problem with transportation and can’t get downtown to get their needs fulfilled.”
The latest plans reflect recommendations of a Blue Ribbon Commission appointed to determine how to best invest in new and upgraded facilities that address the most important needs of the communities JPS serves.
Just before the COVID-19 pandemic, voters overwhelmingly passed a bond referendum which authorized JPS to borrow up to $800 million to update and expand facilities. It was the first time the health network asked to issue bonds since 1985.
Later phases of plans for the bond funds currently include three new patient towers and a diagnostic testing center.