South Carolina granted a certificate of need to Tenet Healthcare Corp., Dallas, over three competing hospital systems to build a $124.5 million, 100-bed hospital in Fort Mill, although an expected appeal could delay the start of construction up to two years. Tenet's Piedmont Medical Center, Rock Hill, will move 36 of its 288 beds to Fort Mill. The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control said that awarding the CON to Piedmont will allow a larger hospital to be built in Fort Mill than the other applicants could build without expanding capacity in the area beyond what's called for under the state healthcare plan. The agency also cited Piedmont's two decades of experience in the market and its contract with York County that requires Tenet to keep its charges in line with other providers.
The other applicants, all based in Charlotte, N.C., were Carolinas HealthCare System, Hospital Partners of America and Presbyterian Healthcare. Spokespersons for Carolinas and Presbyterian said their systems will decide whether to appeal after reviewing the decision. At deadline, HPA could not be reached for comment. -- by Vince Galloro