Scripps Health, a California-based nonprofit health system, announced a $2.6 billion expansion plan in early November. The new construction is slated to begin in 2021 and will be the largest development in the company’s 125-year history. The renovations will primarily target two of the health system’s five hospitals, Mercy Hospital in San Diego and Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, though all five will be updated.
The planned buildings and restorations will address shifting trends and innovations in the healthcare industry, particularly regarding technological advances. Scripps Mercy Hospital in San Diego is the primary target, with an estimated renovation cost of $1.3 billion allotted for the complete replacement of the facility, which includes a 710,000-square-foot tower. Construction is estimated to span from 2021 to 2027. Mercy Hospital is the health system’s oldest and largest facility, with 520 staffed beds, and will be outfitted to accommodate modern care practices.
Top Revenue Centers for Scripps Health System (FY 2016)
Net Revenue (M)
Total Net Income
Fig 1 Data from Definitive Healthcare
Other projects include a seven-story patient tower at Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, a three-story acute care tower at Scripps Memorial Hospital in Encinitas, and seismic retrofitting for Scripps Mercy Hospital in Chula Vista and Scripps Green Hospital in La Jolla. The health system will also build two outpatient oncology centers in cooperation with MD Anderson, reportedly in the hope of strengthening the relationship between the two corporations. All construction is slated to finish by 2030.
Scripps Hospitals by Net Patient Revenue
Net Revenue (M)
# Staffed Beds
Mercy Hospital - San Diego
Memorial Hospital - La Jolla
Green Hospital - La Jolla
Memorial Hospital - Encinitas
Pioneers Memorial Healthcare District (affiliate)
Mercy Hospital - Chula Vista
Fig 2 Data from Definitive Healthcare
A spokesperson for Scripps says she believes the improvements will promote job security. With the addition of two new towers at the system's largest campuses, as well as the increased ability to provide innovative and specialized care, the demand for dedicated staff will remain high. Construction plans include flexible space designs that anticipate rapid technological evolution and care delivery methods, and new care spaces will be easily adaptable to accommodate new equipment and medical devices. Additionally, hospital floors are being designed according to industry best practice and LEAN standards. In order to increase efficiency, nurse’s stations will be closer patients and have more direct access to medical equipment and supplies.
Top 10 Procedures at Scripps Hospitals by Total Charges
APC Group Title
Total Charges (M)
Level 3 Type A Emergency Visits
Level 4 Type A Emergency Visits
Diagnostic Cardiac Catheterization
Level 2 Endovascular Procedures
Computed Tomography w/o Contrast
Combined Abdomen and Pelvis CT w/ Contrast
Level 3 Radiation Therapy
Level 3 Pacemaker and Similar Procedures
Level 1 Plain Film Including Bone Density Measurement
Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Angiography w/o Contrast
Fig 3 Data from Definitive Healthcare
In addition to the large planned expansion, Scripps opened a women’s heart center in San Diego at the beginning of 2017. The center is located on the Memorial Hospital La Jolla campus and is led by four female cardiologists. The health system also revealed to Definitive Healthcare that it will be going live with an inpatient Epic EHR system in 2018, replacing McKesson at all five of its hospitals.
Scripps Health System is not alone in its plans for growth and renovation. According to Definitive Healthcare Data, River’s Edge Hospital (MN) was approved to begin the bidding process on a $33 million expansion starting in 2018. Plans include new surgical areas, patient rooms, emergency department area, urgent care center, a pharmacy, and housekeeping area. Altru Hospital (ND) is also in the process of building a new facility. The replacement of the current hospital, which is older and found to have structural issues, will cost an estimated $250 million. Construction is set to begin in 2019, with the new facility opening in 2022.
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