SAN ANTONIO — An agreement signed between University Health, Texas A&M University-San Antonio (A&M-SA) and the Texas A&M University Health Science Center (Texas A&M Health) will expand health services and education in Bexar County and Expand South Texas.
“This will be a game changer for the community,” said George B. Hernández, President and CEO of University Health, during the official signing ceremony at A&M-SA.
The inauguration comes after University Health purchased 68 acres at the west entrance of the A&M-SA campus, which will house the University Health Institute of Public Health, where a 257-bed hospital will be built by 2027. Bexar County Commissioners distributed $30 million in federal bailout law money for the institute. The Texas A&M System Board of Regents approved funding to build a $45 million College of Education and Public Health facility in A&M-SA.
“This agreement marks a major step forward in expanding the health professions for our community,” said Hernández.
According to University Health, all parties involved intend this partnership to accelerate the education of health professionals, expand medical research and provide needed health services to underserved communities in southern Bexar County and south Texas.
“When it comes down to it, collaborations are important. University healthcare needs well-trained healthcare professionals. The Texas A&M Health Science Center and Texas A&M University-San Antonio create them. This agreement formally recognizes that and binds us by helping us better fulfill our collective mission to serve San Antonio,” said Chancellor John Sharp, chief executive of the Texas A&M University System.
Through their joint work, they aim to improve population health and health equity by providing high quality and efficient healthcare.
“This partnership strengthens our collective efforts to address health inequalities in South Bexar County and enhances A&M-San Antonio’s ability to consciously educate the Latino/A community on tomorrow’s health care professionals for our region and state,” said Dr . Cynthia Teniente-Matson, President of Texas A&M-San Antonio, who co-signed the agreement with Hernández and Jon Mogford, PhD, Chief Operating Officer and Senior Vice President of Texas A&M Health.
“By taking direct action to improve population health and respond to the needs of our growing and diverse population, we will be able to reduce health disparities for the greater good,” Mogford said.
With this alliance, Texas A&M said their institution can advance in many areas, such as the following:
- Expand health-related medical education and clinical programs for college students, graduate students and professionals with Texas A&M Health
- Increase A&M-SA enrollment in health science program offerings such as community and rural health degree offerings, health administration, behavioral health programs, health sciences, and biomedical degrees
- Create a new Public Health unit at A&M-SA for research
- Support the development of medical, clinical, and non-clinical staff to serve the community and Latino/A leaders in health-related fields
- Foster a positive patient experience, compassionate patient care, excellence in education, public health promotion and intervention, and excellent health outcomes
In addition, A&M-San Antonio will continue to work with the ASPIRE network of seven ISDs to mentor emerging healthcare professionals.
As can be seen, there is a long list of benefits as the University Health Community Hospital will be close to campus. Instead of having to treat patients at the medical center’s university hospital, they can take advantage of routine inpatient services such as low-risk births and hip surgeries.