PARKERSBURG, W.Va.-(WTAP) In West Virginia, hospitals and medical facilities adding or expanding health care services have to go through a process known as "Certificate of Need", through the state Health Care Review Authority.
A local delegate would like to eliminate that process, saying it hurts smaller hospitals.
Wood County Delegate John Kelly told us recently he would like to see legislation eliminating that process. He believes doing so would create more competition among medical facilities.
He says that's particularly true with smaller hospitals located in the central part of the Mountain State, compared with those bordering on other states.
"Right now, any competition that comes into the state is restricted to having a certificate of need study done,' Delegate Kelly says. "By eliminating that, it gives other medical facilities an opportunity to just come into the state."
WVU Medicine, partnered with Camden Clark Medical Center in Parkersburg and other hospitals statewide, issued a statement this week in support of the current Certificate of Need program.
It says the process prevents out-of-state healthcare providers from attracting West Virginia patients, and keeps jobs in the state.
The statement adds changes in the process that went into effect a few years ago are working.