County Commission Passes $2.5 Billion Bond Proposal to Harris Health System in November Vote – Houston Public Media

Front view of Ben Taub's building
Photo courtesy of Ben Taub Hospital in Houston.

Harris County voters will decide in November whether to approve a $2.5 billion bond for the county’s Safety Net public health care program, which will upgrade services and upgrades amid growing needs and an aging infrastructure. want to expand.

County commissioners voted unanimously on Thursday to put the proposed bond on the November 7 ballot. If approved, it would fund the renovation and expansion of both Lyndon B. Johnson (LBJ) and Ben Taub Hospitals, as well as open three new community clinics in areas of need. .

Houston’s two hospitals have been running at capacity and haven’t undergone major renovations in about 30 years, according to county officials, during which time the county’s population nearly doubled. The Harris Health System is focused on serving low-income patients who are uninsured or underinsured.

Dr. Esmail Porsa, CEO of Harris Health Systems, said there was a “massive underinvestment” in the company’s infrastructure during an appearance at the Houston Matters with Craig Cohen in June. Ta. The bond will fund approximately 120 additional hospital rooms at Ben Taub, one of two Level 1 trauma centers within Texas Medical Center, as well as LBJ in northeast Houston outside of Texas. It will be rebuilt into the region’s first level 1 trauma center. medical center.

RELATED: Harris Health’s $45M deficit, America’s bailout bill after last fall’s budget battles will be a stopgap

Level 1 centers provide the highest level of surgical care for trauma patients and have a wide range of specialists and equipment available at all times.

The bond will also provide funding to increase the availability of outpatient services at LBJ Hospital and expand it to include a total of 390 patient beds. At Ben Taub, the expansion plan will add at least 15 years to its useful life, according to the county.

The aforementioned community clinics associated with the bond proposal will be located in the eastern, northwestern and southwestern parts of Harris County.

The bond will fund the project for 10 years and will cost owners of $300,000 homes an additional $6 a month in taxes, the county said.

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