On Sept. 18, Alabama’s Certificate of Need Review Board approved requests to build two free-standing emergency facilities in west Hoover.
The approvals, granted to UAB Medical West and Princeton Baptist Medical Center, come at the peak of a territorial dispute between the two organizations. Both UAB and Baptist have filed oppositions to each other’s request to build in near the intersection of Interstate 459 and Alabama Highway 150.
According to Clark Bruner, health planner with the State Health Planning and Development Agency, the CON Board heard testimony from both sides during last month’s meeting, and an administrative law judge in Montgomery had previously considered extensive documentation. Following more than an hour on the subject, the board decided to approve Certificates of Need for both facilities.
He added that appeals were likely coming.
Neal Morrison, chairman of the CON Review Board, said he felt the board’s decision to approve requests for both parties came because the area has a need for a facility of this type and the board sought to do what was best for the people. He said he suggested during the meeting that UAB West and Princeton to consider working together.
“The board felt like both parties in this case had the expertise to open a free-standing emergency room,” Morrison said. “I still hope they can work on a joint venture, but there is a need in that part of the world and at the end of the day, all we care about is getting people the services they need.”
UAB Medical West proposed to build its facility in Hoover in October 2011, and Baptist Medical announced its plans the following month. Both filed for Certificates of Need in December 2011.