Operating at near or full capacity since opening on Nov. 11, 2021, Sarasota Memorial Hospital-Venice is already poised for expansion. Sarasota Memorial Health Care System has announced a $113 million plan to add a third patient care tower to meet what it says is southern Sarasota County's growing needs.
During its first six months of operation, SMH-Venice managed more than 16,000 visits to its emergency room, admitted roughly 5,200 patients, performed more than 1,400 surgeries and delivered more than 60 babies.
The hospital opened with 110 beds and includes a 28-bed emergency care center; eight surgical suites; dedicated labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum birthing suites; and a 22-bed pandemic-ready intensive care unit.
Experiencing higher-than-anticipated volumes from day one, SMH immediately began planning for the expansion. Pre-construction work is underway to add 68 private patient suites by early 2024 pending design and permitting approvals, said hospital President Sharon Roush.
“While the pandemic certainly added to our volumes, the real driver for this expansion is the rapid population growth we are seeing in the south county region and a strong preference among patients to receive their medical and surgical care at SMH,” Roush said.
SMH-Venice is Sarasota Memorial’s second acute care hospital. With nearly 1,000 employees and more than 1,000 physicians and medical staff, SMH-Venice offers medical services ranging from emergency and intensive care to specialized surgery and medical care for cardiac, stroke, orthopedic, obstetrical patients and more.
Located at the intersection of Laurel and Pinebrook roads, the the 65-acre campus was designed to be flexible and expandable without impacting current operations. In future phases, the hospital has the capacity to more than double in size to 400 private inpatient suites, 16 surgical suites and a 50-bed emergency room.
Bringing Sarasota Memorial's physician base farther south also will help build the medical staff and support plans for a future hospital in North Port.
"Although the need to expand came sooner than anticipated, we are moving forward quickly so that we can care for our growing community now and for years to come," Roush said.