No more communal showers after Mayo expands St. Marys campus

Mayo Clinic's board has signed off on a $217 million upgrade of its oldest campus

Mayo Clinic is firming up its roots before it embarks on 20 years of expansion.

Its Board of Trustees approved a plan to sink $217 million into the St. Marys campus in Rochester, Mayo announced Thursday.

St. Marys Hospital and the nearby buildings occupy the oldest part of Mayo's sprawling presence in the city. It's the site where a 27-bed hospital opened in 1889 after the Mayo brothers and their dad first teamed up with the Sisters of St. Francis.

There's been a lot of growth since then – and more is on the drawing board. The renovation and expansion of St. Marys is separate from the $6 billion Destination Medical Center initiative, but will complement that 20-year project, Mayo officials told Twin Cities Business.

What they're doing

The plans Mayo outlined Thursday include adding three floors of space to two different buildings.

One of the big differences the expansion will make is that they'll have enough space to turn semi-private rooms into private ones, where patients have their own bathrooms and showers.

Mayo says right now patients in 143 beds on the St. Marys campus have to share communal showers with those in other rooms.

The plans also include expanding the neonatal and pediatric intensive care units as well as the cardiovascular ICU. The whole cardiac surgery unit will move to a new location and other operating rooms will get more space.

Will privatization raise the cost of a hospital room?

The Post Bulletin asked that question and got a "We aren't disclosing this information at this time" from a Mayo spokeswoman.

Mayo told the newspaper the renovation and expansion at the St. Marys campus will happen over five years. That means it will coincide with the Destination Medical Center work, which is expected to begin in earnest late this year.

Mayo says the St. Marys work will lead to 280 more jobs when it is complete, Twin Cities Business reports.

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