DENTON, Texas -- More than $90.1 million has been awarded to the state of Texas by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for work on the University of Texas Medical Branch’s (UTMB) Healthcare Core Complex (HCCC) in the aftermath of Hurricane Ike.
Hurricane Ike severely damaged the UTMB campus in Galveston, including the eight buildings within the HCCC, which housed a blood bank and departments such as sterile processing, pharmacy, epidemiology, histology and respiratory care.
UTMB, in partnership with the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) and FEMA, identified mitigation measures to reduce the threat to critical functions within the HCCC from future storm events. The selected measures include the construction of a Clinical Services Wing (CSW), which will be elevated above storm surge level; the relocation of critical functions from the first floor of the HCCC to the elevated CSW; and the elevation of mechanical, electrical and plumbing equipment in the HCCC to allow upper floors to continue operation if another future flooding event should occur.
“The University of Texas Medical Branch’s campus in Galveston serves a critical role as the only local hospital for residents of Galveston Island,” said FEMA Region 6 Administrator Tony Russell. “We are proud of the work that is being done, in conjunction with our local and state partners, to rebuild this facility and to make more it more resilient in the face of possible future storms.”
The total cost for these mitigation measures is approximately $100 million. FEMA’s contribution, made possible by a Public Assistance grant, represents a 90 percent federal cost share before any applied insurance settlements. FEMA awards funding for projects directly to the state of Texas; the state then forwards the grant to the eligible applicant.
The purpose of FEMA’s Public Assistance program is to provide assistance to eligible state, tribal and local governments, and certain types of private nonprofit organizations so that communities can quickly respond to and recover from major disasters or emergencies declared.
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.?