Hospital Testimony Provided on Michigan’s Certificate of Need Program

Posted on December 05, 2019

Hospital leaders testified Dec. 5 before the Senate Health Policy and Human Services Committee, chaired by Sen. Curt VanderWall (R-Ludington), on bills that would make major changes to the Certificate of Need (CON) program in Michigan. 

James “Chip” Falahee, senior vice president of legal and legislative affairs, Bronson Healthcare, providing testimony on CON before the Senate committee.CON is a program that ensures only needed healthcare services are developed in Michigan. It requires hospitals, nursing homes and other healthcare providers to seek CON approval to increase the number of licensed beds, relocate licensed beds from one site to another, acquire an existing health facility, begin operating a new health facility or start, replace or expand certain medical services. CON benefits Michiganders by ensuring high-quality, accessible, cost-effective care for patients in the state.

Senate Bills (SBs) 669-675 would make major changes to Michigan’s CON program. The MHA is supportive in concept of SB 669, which would increase the threshold for capital expenditures that are covered under the program, and SB 671, which would increase the number of members on the CON Commission. The MHA is opposed to SB 670, which would exempt some critical access hospitals from CON; SB 674 (as written), which removes air ambulance services from CON without appropriate safeguards for patients in state regulation; and SB 675, which removes some cardiac catheterization procedures from CON oversight. The MHA has not taken a position on SBs 672 and 673, which would impact behavioral health services.

Chuck Nelson, CEO, Dickinson County Health System, speaking on the importance of CON.Testifying before the committee were Chuck Nelson, CEO, Dickinson County Health System; Al Jansen, corporate director of community and residential services, Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services; John McNamara, manager, state government relations, McLaren Health Care; and MHA Board member James “Chip” Falahee, senior vice president of legal and legislative affairs, Bronson Healthcare.

The MHA will work to protect CON as a means of maintaining access to cost-effective, high-quality care for all Michigan residents while restraining the proliferation of unnecessary facilities and services. The association also supports a fair and open process to amend CON standards when appropriate to reflect current standards of care and technological advancements. Members with questions may contact Adam Carlson at the MHA.


  • Hospital Testimony Provided on Michigan’s Certificate of Need Program

Tags: CON, Sen. Curt VanderWall, Chuck Nelson, Al Jansen, John McNamara, James Falahee, access, Adam Carlson

Posted in: Issues in Healthcare, Member News

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