The Iowa Hospital Association said it opposes a recently introduced bill to expand Iowas certificate-of-need law to include hospitals that relocate within a county. Were opposed to any change in the law, said Greg Boattenhamer, IHAs senior vice president of government relations.
Boattenhamer said replacement hospitals do not expand capacity or alter market competition and therefore do not require oversight under the CON law. Iowas rural, aging hospitals would face additional costs and political hassles should the law change, he said.
The bill is one of two recent challenges to Iowas CON exemption, passed in 1997, for replacement hospitals built within a county. Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Iowa, Des Moines, sued last week to require two local hospitals to receive CON approval before building replacement facilities. -- by Melanie Evans