MUSC Receives DHEC Approval for Certificate of Need to Build 128-bed Hospital in Berkeley County

Contact: Sheila Champlin

July 24, 2018

CHARLESTON, S.C. – The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) has received approval for its Certificate of Need (CON) to build a new hospital in Berkeley County. The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) granted the approval. DHEC is the state body that must issue a CON before certain types of health care acquisitions, expansions and creation of new facilities are allowed.

MUSC Health Community Hospital at Nexton will be a 311,221-square-foot facility with 128 beds, to provide a range of specialized inpatient and outpatient services. Estimated at a cost of $325 million, the project is expected to be operational in 2022. One of the area’s newest planned communities, Nexton is located in Summerville at the crossroads of I-26 and 17A in the path of metro Charleston’s vigorous growth. 

“The Nexton hospital will be a much-needed addition to our health care system,” said MUSC President David J. Cole, M.D., FACS. “Our network of MUSC hospitals, clinics and other care facilities is positioned to provide patients with the right care, at the right time and in the right location. As the only publicly assisted, comprehensive, statewide academic medical center, MUSC has a mission and responsibility unlike any other health care facility in South Carolina. We are charged with discovering, developing, teaching and delivering the most advanced health care for every patient across the state.”   

“We are committed to delivering top-quality care and increased access to every patient,” said Patrick J. Cawley, M.D., MHM, FACHE, MUSC Health CEO and vice president for Health Affairs, University. “To achieve this goal, we must position our health care network in synchronicity with the energetic growth of the greater Charleston community.”

Previously, the state health plan identified the need for 147 additional MUSC beds to serve the tri-county area (Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester counties), based on MUSC’s existing hospital occupancy and fill rates. MUSC Health Community Hospital at Nexton is designed to meet many of the increasing health care demands by bringing consistent, high quality and compassionate care to a convenient, neighborhood location.   

About MUSC

Founded in 1824 in Charleston, The Medical University of South Carolina is the oldest medical school in the South. Today, MUSC continues the tradition of excellence in education, research, and patient care. MUSC educates and trains more than 3,000 students and 700 residents in six colleges (Dental Medicine, Graduate Studies, Health Professions, Medicine, Nursing, and Pharmacy), and has nearly 14,000 employees, including approximately 1,500 faculty members. As the largest non-federal employer in Charleston, the university and its affiliates have collective annual budgets in excess of $2.4 billion, with an annual economic impact of more than $3.8 billion and annual research funding in excess of $250 million. MUSC operates a 700-bed medical center, which includes a nationally recognized Children's Hospital, the Ashley River Tower (cardiovascular, digestive disease, and surgical oncology), Hollings Cancer Center (a National Cancer Institute-designated center), Level I Trauma Center, Institute of Psychiatry, and the state’s only transplant center. In 2017, for the third consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report named MUSC Health the number one hospital in South Carolina. For more information on academic programs or clinical services, visit For more information on hospital patient services, visit