Two healthcare firms fight to build a new hospital

Two healthcare companies are facing off for state approval to build a new hospital in a fast-growing area of Florida.

In response to a state report saying the area needs 81 hospital beds by 2016, Central Florida Health Alliance and Hospital Corporation of America both applied for state approval to build new hospitals in Wildwood, Fla., reports the Star-Banner. CFHA wants to add to its current holdings, and says allowing another chain to build would disrupt continuity and quality of care, according to its application.

HCA contends it would give patients a choice of care providers. Currently no other hospital holds more than a 4 percent market share, which seriously limits patient choice, reports the Star-Banner. HCA also notes that CFHA doesn't have the funds to build a new hospital.

CFHA has proposed building Brownwood Hospital--a five-story, 80-bed, 325,000-square-foot facility. HCA wants to build Wildwood Medical Center--an 84-bed facility.

It is up to the state Agency for Health Care Administration to determine which healthcare company, if either, should receive the "certificate of need" to proceed, notes the Star-Banner. A decision is expected Dec. 10.

For more:
- read this Star-Banner article
- check out this Becker's article