AUSTIN, Texas - (April 12, 2012) - University Medical Center Brackenridge needs to be replaced "as soon as possible," according to a consulting firm's report on the public hospital that provides trauma care for an 11-county region and trains new doctors.
Chicago-based Huron Consulting Group concluded that operating rooms are too small, wiring and computer equipment are at capacity, and heating and cooling systems are inadequate, according to the Austin American-Statesman. Even an extensive renovation would not meet current needs, much less greater clinical and education demands that would emerge if The University of Texas System establishes a medical school in Austin and UMC Brackenridge becomes its primary teaching hospital, the report said.
The Huron Report was issued the day after the debut of a new video - Dream, Dare, Do - at the annual UMC Brackenridge fundraising luncheon Tuesday. It champions efforts to establish a medical school and build a modern teaching hospital in Austin. These components of the so-called " 10 in 10" proposal will:
- Increase the local availability of cutting-edge care for everyone in the region, reducing Central Texans' need to travel to Houston, Dallas or other cities for treatment.
- Increase the number of physicians in Central Texas, making it easier to find a doctor - especially for seniors on Medicare and those with limited or no health insurance.
- Create 15,000 new local jobs and spur the development and commercialization of new biotech and medical products and technologies for a worldwide market.
Many of the elements needed to make " 10 in 10" a reality are already here, most notably the presence of faculty and residents of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School - Austin; Dr. Steven Warach, one of the nation's preeminent stroke experts and the newly appointed leader of the Seton/UTSW Clinical Research Institute of Austin; the UT-Pediatric Research Institute; tremendous innovation capital in sciences and business; and a large number of community members who've fully embraced this vision.
UMC Brackenridge, operated by the Seton Healthcare Family, is owned by Central Health, the health district for Travis County, on behalf of the community. It plays a significant role in caring for victims of traumatic injury and researching more effective protocols. It also provides many services for patients who have little or no health insurance. The hospital was planned in the 1960s, when the practice of medicine was significantly different, and constructed through the 1970s and early 80s.