If CON were to go away, we would be left with a community where boutique health care businesses move in and offer only profitable services, instead of balancing these with vital services the community needs. This shift in health care would leave patients with fewer options because community hospitals would no longer be able to afford to offer many of the services they currently provide.
You see, the repeal of CON would mean that many patients would find themselves with fewer options for certain acute care services as community hospitals would no longer be able to afford to provide them. These hospitals would be forced to spend most their resources to provide services (the ones that are the most unprofitable) to patients without insurance or the inability to pay. At the same time, community hospitals would see a loss in market share (and thus revenue) of profitable medical services to these new specialty-medical practices that will flood the market post CON - leaving little room for necessary (albeit unprofitable) services and procedures. In Pennsylvania, state health analysts observed a serious decline in general acute care hospitals in the 10 years (1996-2005) after the state ended its CON law. At the same time, there was a dramatic increase in ambulatory service centers.
Finally, the deregulation of CON would hamper Jupiter Medical Center’s ability to provide community benefits like the $7 million we invested in Diabetes education, nutrition services, mammography screenings, wellness classes and support groups in 2015. A decrease in revenue that would come with deregulation could prevent us from providing the services our community needs and limit our neighbors’ access to these types of invaluable services.
I strongly believe that everyone in our community deserves access to the best, and most affordable health care. So, I continue to advocate for our legislators to put down this legislation, convene a working group of health care leaders, physicians, medical professionals and patient advocates and work toward providing the highest quality and most affordable health care for this State’s most precious resource - Floridians.
You can read more about what has occurred in other states by referencing the research study below.