Mission and Overview

Mission and Overview

Mission: The mission of the TDCJ Hospital is to provide optimal patient care and effective security through coordination of resources of the University of Texas Medical Branch and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. The purpose of the TDCJ Hospital is to operate a secure medical facility for the provision of inpatient care as well as outpatient ambulatory care to the offender patients of the Texas Department Criminal Justice.

Overview: The University of Texas Medical Branch - Texas Department of Criminal Justice Hospital is an acute care inpatient and outpatient facility accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations located on the campus of the University Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas.

The UTMB-TDCJ Hospital was the first and remains the only one of its kind, specializing in offenders health care on the campus of a major academic medical center. The hospital opened in July 1983 and currently operates 172 inpatient beds, a multi-service ambulatory care center, a minor operating room with a recovery room, a telemetry unit of 12 beds, a medical intensive care unit of 6 beds and a 56-bed overnight holding unit. The UTMB-TDCJ Hospital provides a complete range of inpatient and outpatient services within the confines of a secured environment, which is staffed by Texas Department of Criminal Justice Institutional Division officers.

On-site services (within the Hospital) include:

 Pulmonary Care
 Digital Radiology imaging
 Pharmacy Occupational and Physical Therapy
 Infusion Therapy

  Audiology testing booths
 Ophthalmology examination suites with laser technology
 GI endosocopy & colonscopy

        Attached to the complex of UTMB hospitals,
the UTMB-TDCJ hospital has access to the 20+ operating rooms,
7 intensive care units, a burn unit, and a Level 1 trauma center.

Specialty medical services provided at UTMB include:

 EMG/NCV, EEG, and Evoked Potential
 Non-invasive Cardiology (Echo, ECG, Stress testing)
 MRI & CT, Special Invasive Radiology
 Speech Pathology
 Cardiac Catheterization and Electrophysiology Labs
 Pulmonary Function Laboratory
 Radiation Oncology


At UTMB-TDCJ Hospital Galveston, 2 floors -- each with three 24-bed nursing units -- are dedicated to inpatient care. Each 12-room nursing unit is secured behind a locked gate controlled by an officer in a security picket who has visual and auditory contact with all persons going in and out of the unit. Each room has doors that may be locked; beds with no removable parts; mirrors made of aluminum; and reinforced window glass. The nurses’ station allows visual observation of the rooms and state of the art nurse call system in each room allows verbal contact between the patient and staff. Offender holding areas, which accommodate the 120+ outpatients seen at UTMB-TDCJ Hospital Galveston each day, are staffed by correctional officers and UTMB nursing personnel.

The University of Texas Medical Branch - Texas Department of Criminal Justice Hospital provides all services to UTMB-TDCJ offender patients under a capitated contract for all professional and technical services. The hospital is operated in a staff-model HMO environment. Medical, administrative, and support staff dedicated to this hospital are employees of The University of Texas Medical Branch.

The UTMB-TDCJ Telemedicine network is the largest in the United States. Specialty medical and surgical clinics are held in the UTMB-TDCJ Hospital for patients throughout the UTMB-TDCJ and Federal Bureau of Prison Systems, allowing consultation without unnecessary transport of offenders. The Telemedicine network includes state and federal facilities throughout the State of Texas and specialist consultations are possible throughout the United States. This Telemedicine network supports teleconferencing for continuing medical and nursing education programs and grand-rounds style lectures. The system architecture allows TDCJ Hospital-Galveston or any site to be online with any other site or combination of locations.