HealthSouth Corp., Birmingham, Ala., was added as a defendant in a civil lawsuit aimed at blocking construction of HealthSouth's $240 million digital hospital in its corporate hometown. Baptist Health System and Brookwood Medical Center, both based in the Birmingham area, filed the suit in May after Alabama passed a law granting the project a certificate-of-need waiver. Originally the state Planning and Development Agency was the only defendant, accused of issuing a certificate-of-need based on a law that violated the state constitution. Brookwood CEO John Nickens said HealthSouth was added to the complaint after attorneys discovered the agency's director had issued the CON rather than the CON board. "The board, to best of our knowledge, has not met and issued a certificate," Nickens said. "You have to have a CON to start a project of that size in Alabama." HealthSouth officials weren't immediately available for comment. A summary judgment on the suit is expected in fall. Meanwhile, HealthSouth issued second-quarter financials, reporting net income of $57.5 million on revenue of $1.16 billion. In the year-ago quarter, HealthSouth had recorded a loss of $19.9 million on revenue of $1.1 billion, reflecting charges related to the divestiture of occupational medicine operations. -- by Julie Piotrowski
HealthSouth CON fight grows more complicated
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