Physician-owned hospital expansion bill introduced in Senate to aid coronavirus overflow: 4 details

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, introduced a bill on March 19 that would allow physician-owned hospitals to expand their facilities in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, according to Bloomberg Government.

Four things to know:

1. The bill would let physician-owned hospitals expand their number of beds and surgical rooms without limitations during the 2020 coronavirus emergency period. The ACA put a moratorium on physician-owned hospital expansion in 2010 that remains today.

2. The coronavirus emergency period was defined as March 13, 2020, until the day President Donald Trump declares the emergency period over.

3. In some states, including California and Washington, acute care hospitals are looking for extra hospital beds for overflow capacity. The extra beds may be needed for patients with COVID-19 or those without the virus that require hospitalization during this time.

4. Kaiser Permanente based in Oakland, Calif., and Lincoln, Neb.-based Bryan Health System are preparing to use beds at ASCs as they prepare for a surge of patients. Expanding physician-owned hospital size and beds could help alleviate the strain as well.

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