Welcome.

This ASH Redesign site was created by Dell Medical School at The University of Texas at Austin to share the ASH Brain Health System Redesign Report created for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) as requested by Senate Bill No. 1, Riders 145, 147 of the 85th Texas Legislature. Accessible versions of the report and appendices are available for download.

Concept rendering from the master plan of a future vision for the Austin State Hospital Campus, reimagined as more than a hospital, but a platform for the entire continuum of care for a brain health system. Image created by Page/ for Dell Medical School.

Concept rendering from the master plan of a future vision for the Austin State Hospital Campus, reimagined as more than a hospital, but a platform for the entire continuum of care for a brain health system. Image created by Page/ for Dell Medical School.

 
Brain disorders are among the most misunderstood and stigmatized sets of medical conditions.
— Stephen Strakowski, MD
 
 
Report Cover

Report Cover

Reimagining Mental Health

One in five Texans – more than five million people – experience a mental health condition each year, requiring increasing state investment by Texas to help to address these conditions and improve its residents’ lives. As part of that response, the Texas Legislature invested $300 million during the 85th legislative session for improvements to the state’s psychiatric hospitals. The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) contracted with the Dell Medical School at The University of Texas at Austin (Dell Med) to lead a collaborative, $15.5 million preplanning and planning process to redesign the Austin State Hospital (ASH), a facility that serves 38 counties for adults, 57 counties for adolescents, and 75 counties for children.

Dell Med has convened a steering committee of key stakeholder groups from across the region – all of whom see the ASH Brain Health System Redesign (ASH Redesign) as a unique opportunity to reimagine not just a hospital, but also the entire continuum of care for brain health. Using a patients-first approach, the ASH Redesign aims to optimize the overall operational budget through efficiencies that serve more people per tax dollar by delivering the right care at the right time in the right place. The priority on patient care guides every aspect of the design of the physical structure and delivery of care services, for example: single rooms, outdoor access, better sightlines for nurses, evidenced-based models of care, and care that is sensitive to a person’s life experiences. This approach is especially useful in redesigning how the state cares for mental illness. Brain disorders are among the most misunderstood and stigmatized sets of medical conditions.

Dell Med’s primary task in the preplanning and planning effort is to deliver a master plan and recommendation for the Austin State Hospital to HHSC in advance of the 86th Legislative Session in order to secure support and funding for the next phases of the project.