The Nemours Foundation said Florida regulators signed off on a deal that ends objections to Nemours proposed childrens hospital by rivals Orlando Regional Healthcare and Florida Hospital. The Florida Agency for Health Care Administration, which regulates hospital construction under a certificate-of-need process, twice rejected Nemours $267 million hospital before approving it in June 2007.
Under the deal, Orlando Regional and Florida Hospital agreed to drop efforts to appeal Nemours winning bid. Nemours agreed to donate $3.5 million over 10 years to support safety net pediatric care through a federally qualified health center or primary-care access network. Nemours will give another $1 million to two Orlando Regional childrens health programs, pending federal approval. The pediatric provider also agreed to seek Florida approval for pediatric rehabilitation services, including a child and adolescent behavioral health program with a dedicated psychiatric and substance-abuse treatment unit. Nemours must operate each program five years under the deal. State regulators also attached strings when approving Nemours CON, including a guarantee that at least 54% of its patient days be for patients covered by Medicaid or charity care. -- by Melanie Evans
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