INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Clarian Health plans to spend $375 million to $500 million to add a new patient care tower at United Methodist-related Methodist Hospital in Downtown Indianapolis.

The Indianapolis Business Journal recently reported on its Web site that the tower to be completed sometime in 2015 would have 175 to 250 beds and would enable Methodist to make all its hospital rooms private. Half of Methodist’s existing 760 beds are in pairs in semi-private rooms.

Adding private rooms could help Methodist’s business, observers told the journal. Most hospitals built in the past 25 years have had all private rooms and most, older hospitals have tried to convert their rooms to have just one bed each, the IBJ said.

Clarian is trying to convert all three of its Downtown hospitals – Methodist, Indiana University Hospital and Riley Hospital for Children – to all private rooms, the IBJ said. Those three hospitals receive more than 850,000 patient visits each year.

“The Downtown location is the best place for us to serve the 6 million people of Indiana,” said Sam Odle, Clarian’s chief operating officer. “We’re modernizing all of our facilities and expanding those facilities to meet the patient demand.”

Clarian plans to begin construction in 2012, Holly Vonderheit, director of communications and public relations for Clarian, told The Indianapolis Star.

The new tower is the second project Clarian has announced at Methodist this year. Clarian plans to begin work this year on a $75 million neurosciences outpatient center across the street from the hospital. And Methodist has spent $27 million to renovate its operating rooms to accommodate more neurosurgeries.

In 2002, Clarian – a joint venture of (United Methodist-related) Methodist and the Indiana University School of Medicine – centralized cardiovascular procedures at Methodist with a $36 million addition. The new project highlights a resumption of construction by Clarian, which halted its major projects in late 2008 after the Wall Street meltdown hit its investments.

Clarian also has resumed work on a new hospital in Fishers and a patient tower at Riley.

Photo courtesy of Clarian Health

United Methodist-related Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis plans to spend up to $500 million on a new patient tower illustrated here.

“The Downtown location is the best place for us to serve the 6 million people of Indiana.”

– Sam Odle