a large tree in a park

State to replace Smyrna Hospital for Critically Ill

Charles MegginsonGovernment, Headlines

a large tree in a park

Delaware Hospital of the Chronically Ill, from Google Maps Street View


Delaware will spend $50 million to replace the Delaware Hospital for the Chronically Ill in Smyrna with a state-of-the-art 72,000 square foot facility.

The project, which will be funded through federal COVID relief funds, will create 250 to 300 construction jobs.

The hospital’s main building originally opened in 1932. Today, staff at the hospital provide skilled nursing care to more than 100 chronically ill residents.

“The Hospital for the Chronically Ill has provided necessary care to vulnerable Delawareans for years, including throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Gov. John Carney. “But the building itself is more than 90 years old and needs to be replaced.”

He cited the hospital’s five-star rating but said the residents “do not live in a five-star building — and they ought to.”

Carney said the new, modern facility will provide the hospital’s nearly 500 workers with the tools they need to continue providing quality care to Delawareans. 

a vintage photo of an old building

The hospital when originally built in 1931. Photo courtesy of University of Delaware archives.


Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long said that as a nurse, she’s keenly aware of how the pandemic has affected the physical and emotional health of Delaware’s aging population and their families. 

“They deserve the highest quality of care,” Hall-Long said. “These investments will go a long way to ensure that happens.”

The announcement marks the third event this week during which Gov. Carney announced a multi-million dollar project using federal funds from the American Rescue Plant. 

On Monday, state officials announced a $25 million investment in the revitalization of Wilmington’s Riverside neighborhood.

Carney announced on Tuesday a $50 million investment in workforce development initiatives aimed at training Delawareans for skilled labor positions. 

Last month, Governor Carney announced a $110 million plan to provide universal wired broadband access for all Delaware homes and businesses.

“The federal funds coming in have to be spent quickly,” Carney said on Wednesday. “They have to be spent in a way that generates immediate economic activity, create new jobs, etcetera.” 

He said the Department of Health and Social Services had a plan for the hospital’s replacement “on the shelf and ready to go.” 

Carney did not say when construction of the new hospital will be complete.

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