COLUMBIA, SC (WPSA) -The South Carolina House of Representatives unanimously approved a bill that would repeal the state’s Certificate of Need program.
The Senate had passed the bill earlier this year with a 30-6 vote.
‘Certificate of Need’ regulations were put into place by the federal government in the 1970s. According to DHEC, the purpose of CON laws is to promote cost containment and prevent unnecessary duplication of healthcare facilities and services.
Right now, if a healthcare provider in South Carolina wants to add beds, build a new facility or purchase expensive medical equipment, they need to go state health officials for approval.
Competitors can appeal these requests, slowing down the process.
House members made a change to the bill on the floor before passing it. The bill would repeal nearly all parts of ‘Certificate of Need’ regulations almost immediately.
Health providers looking to build a new hospital must go through the ‘Certificate of Need’ process up until January 2027. After that date, the regulations would be repealed.
The bill received a third reading from the House Wednesday and was sent back to the Senate. There are now four days left in this year’s legislative session.
Long-term care facilities would still need to go through the Certificate of Need process.