MUSC trustees vote to move projects forward in Indian Land and Williamsburg-Lake City area

CHARLESTON, S.C. (Feb. 14, 2020)–Progress was squarely on the agenda for board members during the regularly scheduled meeting of the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) and Medical University Hospital Authority (MUHA). In addition to receiving updates on academic, research and clinical matters, the MUSC/MUHA Board of Trustees voted to authorize moving forward with two previously announced projects.  

Approval was unanimously granted to authorize MUSC Health to purchase 87 acres of land in northeastern Lancaster County for the purpose of building a new MUSC Health hospital in Indian Land, South Carolina. The purchase of the land is not to exceed $10.25 million.

As discussed during the October board meeting, there are no existing beds or emergency services in northern Lancaster County, yet Indian Land is the second-fastest-growing zip code in the state. MUSC plans to file a certificate of need (CON) that asks to relocate roughly 100 inpatient beds from the current 225-bed MUSC Health Lancaster Medical Center to a new community hospital to be constructed in Indian Land. The current MUSC Health facility in the city of Lancaster will remain open and continue to serve the patients and families in that area.

“The Indian Land campus will have a full-service hospital at its core, which will include an emergency department, medical and surgical inpatient care, imaging and outpatient care,” said Patrick J. Cawley, M.D., CEO of MUSC Health. “There will also be physician office space and other health-related services.

“That whole area where the population is booming is a bedroom community of Charlotte,” Cawley stated. “We already have patients and employees who commute to our existing hospital in Lancaster to receive care or to work. The new facility in Indian Land will add greater access and convenience for this expanding community,” he added.

“It’s been shown that to serve patients most effectively, you need to be where they are,” Cawley said. “Patients want to receive their health care closest to home and family. These days, we can build a small hospital and do it in a cost-efficient way so patients don’t have to travel. Plus, with our deep experience delivering telehealth, we can also provide smaller hospitals with a lot of specialty care from a distance.”

Taking unanimous action on another project, the board voted to approve hiring GMK/McMillan Pazdan Smith as the architectural firms for the consolidation and relocation of Williamsburg Regional Hospital and Lake City Community Hospital. The boards of these two facilities have agreed to cease operations when MUSC Health constructs and opens a new hospital facility to serve both communities. For more information about the project, please read the original news release.

The new MUSC Health facility will be constructed in Williamsburg County on land donated for this project. The next step will be to organize the building plans so the CON can be filed. Then the review process begins. 

Opening his report to the board with a year-in-review video, MUSC President David J. Cole, M.D., FACS, said, “Our enterprise recorded many remarkable milestones in 2019. This video serves as a highlight reel, reflecting many of the moments that made the year so special for our MUSC family and the communities we serve.”

Cole also shared a selection of innovations and achievements from across the institution, including:

  • The MUSC/ZIAN blink reflexometer (Eye Stat), a portable device capable of discerning concussions, just received FDA approval.
  • More than 1,300 MUSC students and 170 volunteers participated in 2019 Interprofessional Day. This is one example of why MUSC is considered a national leader in interprofessional education.
  • The South Carolina Hospital Association awarded MUSC Health The Capstone Award, which is given to hospitals and health systems pursuing excellence in delivering highly reliable care, developing a healthy workforce and building healthier communities.
  • Established on Feb. 5, 1970, the MUSC Department of Family Medicine is celebrating its 50th birthday, holding the position as the third-oldest department of its kind in the country. 
  • Opening of the MUSC Health West Ashley Medical Pavilion in December to rave reviews and rapid growth. The team at the new MUSC facility handled 10,416 patient visits in the first month as well as 214 surgical cases.
  • The Feb. 22 move-in date is set for the MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital and Pearl Tourville Women’s Pavilion.

During his report, Cole also welcomed and introduced Kate Azizi, the recently arrived vice president for Institutional Advancement.

The MUSC Institutional Advancement team announced that they have successfully secured more than $73 million in new gifts and pledges so far this fiscal year, compared with the more than $25 million at this same time last year. With its annual philanthropy goal set at raising $63 million in fiscal year 2020 (July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020), the office has far exceeded its target. Cole recognized and applauded Linda Cox, who served as the interim leader of the philanthropy team for more than 18 months. 


The MUSC/MUHA Board of Trustees serve as separate bodies to govern the university and hospital, holding two days of committee and board meetings six times a year.


About The Medical University of South Carolina

Founded in 1824 in Charleston, MUSC is the oldest medical school in the South as well as the state’s only integrated academic health sciences center with a unique charge to serve the state through education, research and patient care. Each year, MUSC educates and trains more than 3,000 students and nearly 800 residents in six colleges: Dental Medicine, Graduate Studies, Health Professions, Medicine, Nursing and Pharmacy. The state’s leader in obtaining biomedical research funds, in fiscal year 2019, MUSC set a new high, bringing in more than $284 million.For information on academic programs, visit

As the clinical health system of the Medical University of South Carolina, MUSC Health is dedicated to delivering the highest quality patient care available, while training generations of competent, compassionate health care providers to serve the people of South Carolina and beyond. Comprising some 1,600 beds, more than 100 outreach sites, the MUSC College of Medicine, the physicians’ practice plan, and nearly 275 telehealth locations, MUSC Health owns and operates eight hospitals situated in Charleston, Chester, Florence, Lancaster and Marion counties. In 2019, for the fifth consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report named MUSC Health the No. 1 hospital in South Carolina. To learn more about clinical patient services, visit

MUSC and its affiliates have collective annual budgets of $3.2 billion. The more than 17,000 MUSC team members include world-class faculty, physicians, specialty providers and scientists who deliver groundbreaking education, research, technology and patient care.