Community to expand South hospital

Community Health Network plans to announce a $130 million expansion of its Community Hospital South on Thursday.

The city’s third-largest hospital chain said the expanded hospital would help “meet demand of (the) growing south market,” according to a press statement. The hospital is located on the north side of County Line Road.

Less than a year ago, Community opened its massive, $170 million expansion in Castleton that more than doubled the size of its Community Hospital North.

But fast-growing Johnson County also has become a fierce battleground for Indianapolis’ hospitals. St. Francis Hospital & Health Centers, which has dominated the south side, is building a new five-story, 206-bed tower for patients at its hospital near Interstate 65 and Emerson Road. It is also wrapping up a $42 million expansion of its Mooresville hospital.

Meanwhile, Clarian Health has acquired 180 acres in Bargersville in Johnson County. Clarian has yet to say what it intends to do with the land. Clarian has already built or announced for-profit hospitals in Avon, Carmel and Fishers.

Hospital consultants expect Clarian to eventually build hospitals on all four sides of Indianapolis.

In 2006, Community Health Network had a total of 847 staffed beds, making it roughly half the size of Clarian Health, the state’s largest health system. St. Vincent Health ranks No. 2, according to the 2008 IBJ Book of Lists.

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