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Florida health care facilities look to expand

Many hospitals in Florida are looking to expand the scope of their services or break new ground. However, some of the proposals are focused on areas where there is less need for new hospital facilities. The size of the proposed projects varies greatly, ranging from one facility that wants to add four new neonatal treatment beds to others that are looking to create new facilities with more than 100 beds.

In Florida, construction of new health care facilities requires obtaining a Certificate of Need or CON. Health care regulators assess the needs for new services around the state, developing a fixed-need pool. Throughout the year, there are four cycles in which proposed facilities can apply for a CON, two of which are for hospitals and two of which are for additional services like nursing homes. Before submitting an application for a CON, health care providers must submit a letter of intent to seek approval. The CON must be approved in order to build a new medical facility in the state.

The proposed projects for consideration in Pasco County include a rehabilitation bed project, a new psychiatric hospital with 90 beds and an acute care hospital with 120 beds. Elsewhere in the state, Orlando Health submitted letters of intent to build two hospitals. In Miami-Dade County, the Public Health Trust seeks to build a large new acute care hospital with space for over 100 beds.

Companies and providers that are looking to expand their health care offerings in Florida will need to identify potential properties and handle state regulations through the CON process. A real estate attorney could work with health care providers to navigate the approval system and contract to obtain the property needed to develop new facilities.

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