CARTI to Build $25M Surgery Center in Little Rock

CARTI to Build $25M Surgery Center in Little Rock
CARTI Cancer Center in Little Rock

CARTI announced Wednesday plans to expand its Little Rock campus to include a $25 million on-site surgery center. 

Located adjacent to the nonprofit's flagship cancer center on CARTI Way, the 35,000-SF CARTI Surgery Center will be its second largest construction project since the flagship center's completion in 2015.

Arkansas Business' Whispers column on Monday reported that the nonprofit was expected to unveil its plans soon. Construction of the two-story surgery center is set to begin this summer and wrap up by fall 2022.

CARTI said the facility will have four operating rooms, two procedure rooms, eight private overnight rooms, 12 recovery rooms and 15 pre- and post-op rooms. It will also have extended stay capabilities. 

CARTI's multi-specialty surgical department, which includes fellowship-trained oncologic surgeons, will provide management of all types of cancers in that setting, the nonprofit said.

"The CARTI Surgery Center is a continuation of our commitment to the cancer patients of Arkansas. It's the next logical step in our mission to transform cancer care in the state," President and CEO Adam Head said in a news release. "By bringing a cancer-focused, innovative surgery center to our campus, we are able to improve the patient experience and outcome, while offering a more convenient and comprehensive alternative for our patients.

"With a singular focus on compassionately treating cancer in the most technologically-advanced surgical setting, the CARTI Surgery Center will be unlike anything currently available in the region."

"With the most advanced surgical technologies at our fingertips, we will be able to expand the range of surgical procedures we can provide to our patients," Dr. Scott Stern, CARTI's chief medical director and head and neck oncologic surgeon, said. "From reduced costs to expedited recovery times, research shows that patients benefit from a surgical setting that encourages mobility and safe recovery outside of a hospital setting, which is incredibly important to our vulnerable patient population. This is the future of cancer surgery."

The architect for the project is Cromwell Architects Engineers of Little Rock. CARTI has not yet hired a contractor.

CARTI has been busy. It's also building an $18 million, 25,000-SF cancer treatment center in Pine Bluff, set to open in January. In November, it announced plans to build another center in El Dorado. It already has cancer centers in Conway, Russellville and North Little Rock.

Last month, CARTI announced that it had refinanced more than $51 million in refunding bonds for its Little Rock campus. It said the refinancing, underwritten by Crews & Associates, will save it $3.3 million in interest over the next 22 years and "establish a springboard" to be able to finance future projects across the state.  

"The bond refinancing allows us to be more nimble in future expansion opportunities, allowing us to identify new underserved communities across the region who would benefit from our leading edge cancer care," Head said at the time. "This demonstrates the significant progress we’ve made over the last three years to transform our organization’s finances and hit our operational targets."

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