Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast Announces $30 Million Expansion

June 4, 2014 by SoWal Staff

Leaders of Sacred Heart Health System announced plans yesterday to launch a $30 million expansion of facilities and services at Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast. The expansion will increase the capacity of the Emerald Coast hospital for inpatient services, maternity services, emergency services and pediatric services.

“This is a great day for Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast,” said Susan Davis, President and CEO of Sacred Heart Health System. “We could not be more proud of what Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast has accomplished since its opening in 2003. We are thrilled to be able to make another major investment to expand the services we can provide to the communities we serve.”

The hospital has been working with Ascension Health, parent company of Sacred Heart Health System, on strategic plans to expand services for several years and received formal approval to launch the expansion at the end of May. Construction is scheduled to begin early next year and will be completed in two phases with the first phase opening in 2016 and the second phase opening in 2017.

“Our hospital truly is the product of the vision and commitment of our community to create and ensure access to exceptional, high quality healthcare today and for generations to come,” said Roger Hall, President of Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast. “Over the past 12 years, we have seen our dreams come true of being able to build a mission-driven healthcare organization that transforms the delivery of care by focusing on what’s best for the patient. The community’s support, combined with the outstanding dedication of our medical staff, associates and volunteers, has made this hospital a success, and the future is very bright.”


Expansion Details The hospital consistently operates above 70% occupancy and reaches full capacity during the peak inpatient months of November to March. The inpatient expansion will include the renovation and construction of two intensive care rooms, 14 general inpatient rooms, and shell space for future growth on the second floor of the hospital.

The Family Birth Place has experienced remarkable growth since opening in 2007 and is currently on pace this year to exceed 1,100 deliveries. The Family Birth Place will be redesigned and expanded to provide a total of five labor and delivery rooms, 12 postpartum rooms, two antepartum rooms, three triage rooms, and a larger nursery to accommodate Level II NICU services in the future in conjunction with The Children’s Hospital at Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola.

The emergency department has also experienced high growth rates and is currently on track to serve around 28,000 patients each year. The emergency department expansion will include five additional treatment rooms, shell space for five more treatment rooms in the future, and an eight-bed observation unit to provide care for patients staying less than 24 hours.

The expansion of pediatric services enhances both inpatient and outpatient services. A portion of the new inpatient rooms will be pediatric-friendly to allow for the future expansion of inpatient pediatric services in partnership with The Children’s Hospital at Sacred Heart. A portion of the emergency department rooms will be pediatric-friendly as well. The expansion project also involves the development of a pediatric extended-hours clinic and pediatric specialist consults in a nearby medical office building, in partnership with Sacred Heart physicians, community pediatricians and specialists from Nemours.

A new, state-of-the-art pediatric ambulance will be stationed at Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast in 2015 to expedite the transport of critically ill or injured children to a higher level of care at The Children’s Hospital at Sacred Heart. The addition of the pediatric ambulance was made possible by support from Sam’s Club, Wal-Mart and the Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation. The expansion at the hospital will include a new transport bay for the ambulance to be housed by the emergency department.


Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast opened its doors to patient care in January 2003 as a 50-bed community hospital. Since then, the not-for-profit hospital has grown steadily and continues to fulfill its mission to improve the health of the community at large, with special attention to service of the poor. Key milestones include:

•         $2.2 million emergency department expansion in 2004
•         Joint Replacement Program in 2005
•         $21 million Family Birth Place addition in 2007
•         $1.1 million Women’s Diagnostic Center addition in 2007
•         $1.1 million 64-Slice CT Scanner addition in 2008
•         $300,000 Cardiac Rehabilitation expansion in 2010
•         $9 million Judy and Steve Turner Heart and Vascular Center in 2012
•         Sacred Heart Cancer Center in 2012
•         Spine Center Program in 2013

Recognized nationally for high quality, compassionate and safe healthcare, the hospital has received the 100 Top Hospitals® award from Thomson Reuters and Truven Health four times since opening, including most recently in 2012, 2013 and 2014. For more information about Sacred Heart, please visit


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