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Roper St. Francis plans to move hospital from Charleston peninsula

Officials to name new location in coming weeks
Published: Nov. 3, 2021 at 11:43 AM EDT|Updated: Nov. 3, 2021 at 6:12 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Roper St. Francis Healthcare announced a plan Wednesday to move Roper Hospital away from the Charleston Peninsula where it has been located since 1856.

“Charleston is now a community of over 800,000 people,” RSFH President and CEO Dr. Jeffrey DiLisi said. “The center of Charleston is not right here at the tip of the peninsula. It’s a little bit farther North/Northwest. And we think that rebuilding in a different location is going to allow us to serve our entire community better.”

The move is part of what Roper called a “bold path forward” to care for more patients and modernize technology “to better serve future generations.”

“We want to make sure the patients in our community have the best hospital to be taken care of,” DiLisi said.

The new facility will be “technologically and structurally upgraded to better withstand natural disasters, such as floods, hurricanes and earthquakes,” Roper spokesman Robert Briggs said.

DiLisi said he expects to name a new Roper Hospital location in the coming weeks.

“Obviously we have to make sure we have the right land where we can get the right size for our hospital on it,” he said. “Then we’ll have to move forward with design and regulatory approval. We’d love to move as quickly as possible.”

There will still be some services downtown, including ambulatory sites and office space, according to DiLisi.

The strategic plan, Roper St. Francis Healthcare 2030, is built on five key initiatives, hospital officials say:

  • Optimize the footprint: In addition to relocating Roper Hospital, Roper St. Francis Healthcare will expand Roper St. Francis Berkeley Hospital and the services the system’s newest hospital provides to meet the growing community’s demands. Roper St. Francis Healthcare also will acquire land to improve access where large numbers of residents live, such as the purchase this week of the former Miller Cadillac property near the corner of Johnnie Dodds Boulevard and Mathis Ferry Road in Mount Pleasant.
  • Modernize technology: Roper St. Francis Healthcare will implement a new electronic medical record, Epic, which will enable patients and medical providers to more easily access records.
  • Address the clinical needs of the future: Based on patient needs, Roper St. Francis Healthcare will intentionally expand key health care service lines such as cancer care and orthopaedics.
  • Improve sustainability: Roper St. Francis Healthcare will work behind the scenes on finances, talent management and processes to improve operational efficiency, which are the nuts and bolts that make it possible to serve the community.
  • Expand population management: Roper St. Francis Healthcare will improve the healthcare experience and reduce costs for employers and large populations of patients, such as those who qualify for Medicare.

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