Veterans Hospital in Tulsa (VHiT)
VHiT LLC is a nonprofit vehicle for the development and construction of a new $171.2 million, 58-bed, Veterans Hospital in Tulsa.
It is owned and managed by The Anne and Henry Zarrow Foundation. The project itself is a three-way partnership among Oklahoma State University, including the Oklahoma A&M Board of Regents, Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences and Oklahoma State Medical Authority and Trust; VHiT LLC, and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
An array of supporting partners have played critical roles, including the state of Oklahoma (Governor’s Office, Office of Management and Enterprise Services, State Legislature, Commissioners of the Land Office), the City of Tulsa, Tulsa County and the Tulsa Regional Chamber. In addition, a number of private donors have invested funds in support of both the VA Hospital and the larger OSU Medical Campus Expansion.
Support for a Veterans Hospital in Tulsa
VA Hospital in Tulsa: Background and Timeline
• For years, Oklahoma’s elected officials, namely U.S. Senator James Inhofe, have advocated for improvements in hospital care for Oklahoma veterans. In 2018 the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs acknowledged this need and posted specifications for a new 58-bed medical-surgical hospital in Oklahoma.
• In December of 2018, Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences submitted a formal request to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Construction and Facilities Management for a Partnership Opportunity via the CHIP-IN for Veterans Act of 2016.
• The OSU application was accompanied by endorsements from Sen. Inhofe, Sen. Lankford, Rep. Hern, Rep. Mullin (now Sen. Mullin), as well as: 1) a commitment from the state of Oklahoma to transfer the Kerr Edmondson Buildings and property to OSU/A&M Regents for the benefit of Oklahoma veterans and 2) a philanthropic commitment of $10 million toward hospital construction.
• The OSU application made the case that repurposing the Kerr-Edmondson Buildings and property to serve Oklahoma veterans directly is not only a service to our veterans, but also meets a compelling state interest by leveraging the medical education resources of OSU Center for Health Sciences and the OSU Medical Center to expand dramatically the medical education opportunities for future Oklahoma physicians.
VHiT News and Updates
Learn more about the Veterans Hospital in Downtown Tulsa from selected news clips. Use the arrows to click through to older articles.
JAN 7, 2023
New Tulsa VA hospital gets additional $31.2 millionAn additional $31.2 million is on its way to Tulsa’s new downtown Veterans Affairs hospital, according to VHiT, the nonprofit overseeing the project.
VHiT (Veterans Hospital in Tulsa) said Friday that the additional appropriation — made through last month’s $1.7 trillion omnibus bill and the James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act — will offset unexpected construction costs.
“This new VA hospital has been a herculean effort by so many, and we had faith that our federal delegation would help increase funding to cover this unprecedented inflation,” VHiT Director Courtney Knoblock wrote in an email.
JULY 26, 2022
Demolition begins on new Veterans Hospital in TulsaTULSA, Okla. (Tuesday, July 26, 2022) – Demolition on the Kerr-Edmondson Buildings in downtown Tulsa begins today. Demolition contractor DT Specialized Services, Inc was selected by the Veterans Hospital in Tulsa (VHiT) project team in late spring. Demolition is expected to last six months, and the first phase includes gutting interiors. DT Specialized Services has led demolition on other landmark Tulsa projects including Gilcrease Museum, the Cox Business Center, and the Camelot Hotel.
Built in 1975, the Kerr Edmondson Building served as an office building that was owned by the Office of Management and Enterprise Solutions of the State of Oklahoma. Prior to initiating demolition, the privately developed Federal project underwent National Environmental Policy Act and Historical Preservation clearance.
OCTOBER 30, 2021
New 58-bed Tulsa VA hospital scheduled to open in 2024In 2024, the Eastern Oklahoma VA Health Care System will expand health care for Veterans by opening a new 58-bed VA hospital in Tulsa.
Located at 7th and Houston in downtown Tulsa, the VA hospital will be part of the Oklahoma State University (OSU) Medical Center Campus and the first VA hospital in the nation built as part of a public-private partnership.
The project is a combination of federal and private funds from the Anne & Henry Zarrow Foundation. The State of Oklahoma is also assisting by donating the Kerr-Edmondson buildings, which will be converted into the hospital. The City of Tulsa has committed to building a parking garage on site.
OCTOBER 18, 2021
Downtown Tulsa VA hospital attracting attention for collaboration“A lot is riding on this,” said Michael Brennan, the VA’s chief construction and facilities management officer. “We’re building momentum for having ways for the community and the Department of Veterans Affairs to partner, not just here but at (other) locations.”
Collaboration among federal, state and local governments, the Oklahoma State University Medical Center and its affiliated Center for Health Sciences, plus $26 million from private donors, are the reasons for the interest. All combined to secure authorization for the $193 million project under the 2016 CHIP-IN Act, which allows nonfederal funders to partner with the VA to provide VA facilities.
OCTOBER 15, 2021
New VA hospital breaks ground in Downtown TulsaSoon thousands of Green Country Veterans won’t have to travel a long way for healthcare.
Today a groundbreaking ceremony was held for the new VA Hospital in Downtown Tulsa at the expanded OSU Medical Center grounds.
The $130 million project is a collaborative effort involving the federal, state, county, city, donors, and OSU leaders, all to benefit veterans in the community.
“For veterans’ health, this is a great day. They’re going to be able to put a new hospital downtown paired with an academic medical center, just an amazing opportunity for Veterans health,” Johnny Stephens, interim president with OSU Center For Health Sciences said.
SEPTEMBER 14, 2021
Tulsa VA medical complex to get $4 million from Tulsa County’s COVID relief allocation“Tulsa County is proud to join many public and private partners, including The Anne and Henry Zarrow Foundation, to support this expansion and improve health outcomes for our nation’s veterans, as well as those in our community experiencing a mental health crisis,” Tulsa County Commission Chairman Stan Sallee said in a written statement.
JANUARY 24, 2021
New VA hospital for Tulsa fulfills a public and personal missionEarlier this month, Congress approved the final funding for a new veterans hospital, clearing the way for construction to soon begin on the downtown Tulsa center across from Oklahoma State University Medical Center campus and Cox Business Center.
JANUARY 3, 2021
OSU helps bring new veterans hospital to TulsaThe state announced Sunday that President Trump signed a law that approved $120 million in federal funding for a Veterans Hospital in Tulsa.
DECEMBER 31, 2020
$120 million in federal funding approved for new VA hospital in TulsaOn Sunday, the president signed a law approving $120 million in federal funding for a new Veterans Hospital in Tulsa (VHiT), which will be the first hospital to be built under the Communities Helping Invest through Property and Improvements Needed for Veterans Act of 2016 (CHIP-IN Act).
DECEMBER 30, 2020
Changes coming to Muskogee veterans hospitalMuskogee’s Jack C. Montgomery VA Medical Center will shift its focus to geriatric and mental health patients when a new veterans hospital is built in Tulsa.
DECEMBER 30, 2020
Funds approved for new VA hospital in TulsaOn Sunday, the president signed a law approving $120 million in federal funding for a new Veterans Hospital in Tulsa (VHiT), which will be the first hospital to be built under the Communities Helping Invest through Property and Improvements Needed for Veterans Act of 2016 (CHIP-IN Act).
DECEMBER 28, 2020
$120M Veterans Hospital To Be Built In Downtown TulsaTulsa will soon have a new VA hospital with $120-million of federal funding being approved to build the new facility downtown.
DECEMBER 28, 2020
Funding approved for Tulsa’s VA hospital, set to open in 2024TULSA, Okla. (KTUL) – With funding approved, all lights are green for construction to begin on a new veterans hospital in Tulsa.
DECEMBER 28, 2020
Construction to begin for Tulsa’s VA hospital after Congress approves fundingTULSA, Okla. — Construction is set to begin on a new veterans hospital in Tulsa after Congress recently approved the federal money.
AUGUST 13, 2020
Sen. Inhofe ‘very, very proud’ of progress on new VA hospital in downtown TulsaThe transformation of two state office buildings into a downtown Tulsa Veterans Affairs hospital is on track for an opening in 2024, U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe was told Wednesday.
FEBRUARY 11, 2020
Trump’s Proposed Budget Includes $120M for Veterans Hospital in Downtown TulsaPresident Trump’s proposed budget includes $120 million for a VA hospital in downtown Tulsa.
The Veterans Hospital in Tulsa, or VHiT project, would convert the state-owned Kerr Edmondson building across Seventh Street from OSU Medical Center into a 275,000-square foot, 58-bed hospital.
FEBRUARY 11, 2020
$173 million Veterans Affairs hospital planned for downtown TulsaA new downtown Tulsa Veterans Affairs hospital and a repurposing of the VA’s Muskogee medical center are key components of a plan revealed Monday after President Donald Trump included $120 million for the Tulsa facility in his budget.
The Tulsa hospital will occupy the Kerr-Edmondson state office complex on Houston Avenue between Third and Sixth streets and across Sixth from the Oklahoma State University Medical Center.
Gallery: Veterans Hospital in Tulsa Groundbreaking
More than 130 distinguished guests gathered in downtown Tulsa for the ceremonial groundbreaking of the Veterans hospital in downtown Tulsa on Friday, Oct. 15, 2021. Remarks were provided by key elected officials including U.S. Senator James Lankford, Dr. Michael Brennan Executive Director for the Office of Construction and Facilities Management, and Dr. Steven L. Lieberman, Deputy to the Deputy Under Secretary for Health. The event was emceed by Dr. Kayse Shrum, President of Oklahoma State University.
VHiT Advisory Board
Senator Kevin Matthews
Oklahoma State Senate
Representative Josh West
Oklahoma House of Representatives, Veteran & Chair of Veterans Caucus
Councilor Phil Lakin
Tulsa City Council & Tulsa Community Foundation, CEO
City of Tulsa, Chief of Intergovernmental Relations and Veterans Liaison
American Residential Group, Chairman OSU Medical Authority
Zarrow Family Foundations, Executive Director
Dr. Trudy Milner
Oklahoma A&M Board of Regents
Oklahoma State University, President
Saint Francis Health System, Interim President Laureate Psychiatric Clinic and Hospital
The Veterans Hospital in Tulsa is possible because of $73 Million in Oklahoma Support of the Medical Campus Expansion.
The Anne and Henry Zarrow Foundation
Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Philanthropies
Morningcrest Healthcare Foundation
Maxine and Jack Zarrow Family Foundation
The Helmerich Trust
The H.A. and Mary K. Chapman Charitable Trust
Sarah and John Graves
Common Bond Foundation
William S. Smith Charitable Trust
Sanford & Irene Burnstein Foundation
City of Tulsa
State of Oklahoma
For more information about the Veterans Hospital in Tulsa:
About VHiT Background and Structure
About OSU-CHS Medical Partnerships, Residencies
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