State Denies Competing Hospital Bids
The state has ruled against FirstHealth of the Carolinas and Cape Fear Valley Health System, saying neither can build a 65-bed hospital.
FirstHealth proposed constructing its hospital in Hoke County, while Cape Fear Valley wanted to build its facility on Ramsey Street in Fayetteville.
The two health systems have been battling in Hoke County for years, with each appealing last year’s decision by the state to allow Cape Fear Valley to build a 41-bed hospital and FirstHealth to construct an eight-bed hospital.
The appeals effectively prevent either entity from starting construction.
Meanwhile, each filed a new certificate of need (CON) application earlier this year with the N.C. Division of Health Service Regulation seeking to build a 65-bed hospital. The division issued its finding on Dec. 2 that neither is “approvable standing alone.”
“Therefore, both applications are denied,” the finding said.
Both sites are located within the Cumberland-Hoke County Acute Bed Service Area, as defined by the 2011 State Medical Facilities Plan.
David J. Kilarski, CEO of FirstHealth of the Carolinas, said in a statement Friday that FirstHealth was “disappointed” with the decision.
“We will review the state’s findings over the next couple of weeks and determine our next course of action,” Kilarski said. “Although this application was denied, we will continue to pursue all efforts to build a much-needed hospital in Hoke County.”
The finding states that the application was denied because FirstHealth “did not adequately demonstrate the need for a 65-bed hospital in Hoke County in addition to the approved 41-bed hospital,” nor did it “adequately demonstrate that projected utilization is based on reasonable, credible and supported assumptions.”
Last June, FirstHealth submitted its application for a CON that would allow it to build a 65-bed hospital, a $100 million project that would supersede previous plans.
FirstHealth initially proposed building an eight-bed hospital at a projected cost of $34.1 million.
Either project would be constructed on a 30-acre site on U.S. 401 about halfway between Raeford and the Cumberland County line.
Cape Fear Valley has proposed a $92 million, 41-bed hospital on 60 acres of land it has purchased off U.S. 401 closer to the Hoke-Cumberland line, a location about 3.5 miles east of the FirstHealth site.
Contact Ted M. Natt Jr. at email@example.com.
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