Politicians block hospitals from opening or closing (Yes on Hb 4139)

By Taxpayers Association of Oregon


Oregon erects bureaucratic barriers for when hospitals and health care centers wish to open in an area.   These barriers are called Certificate of Need laws.   HB 4139 would provide some relief.

This Willamette Week article spells it out perfectly:“But in recent years, critics say, the operators of existing facilities have used the certificate of need process to stymie competition. Last year, WW reported on Oregon’s shortage of acute rehabilitation beds, which serve patients who have suffered strokes, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and other physical trauma that may require continued specialized treatment after hospitalization.Oregon offers one of the lowest number of inpatient rehabilitation beds per capita in the nation, ranking 49th, ahead of only Hawaii. But when two national operators of such facilities proposed to build new, standalone 50-bed rehab facilities, one in Clackamas County and one in Washington County, Legacy Health (the operator of the state’s largest rehab facility) and the Oregon Health Care Association, which represents nursing homes, challenged the need for them in OHA’s certificate of need process. The opponents tied up the new applicants for about four years. When, after long-contested cases, OHA finally ruled that Oregon needed both, Legacy and and OHCA appealed to the notoriously backlogged Oregon Court of Appeals. Before the court could rule, both applicants dropped out. “

Coincidentally, Oregon has been in the news for blocking health care centers from closing. You can read our article on this here:

State demands closed birth center re-open, lose money

Oregon needs to let local communities and the people decide what is best for their local health care needs.