$4.8M cardiology ASC wins approval in Alabama 

The Heart & Vascular Institute of Alabama was cleared to build a single-specialty ASC in Montgomery after facing opposition from other health systems and ASCs in the area, Lexology reported July 22. 

The construction cost of the project is estimated at $4.8 million, according to application documents. The center will feature one catheterization lab and a procedure room for future expansion and is slated to handle l,004 cases in its first year. 

The project faced more than a year of opposition from other providers, including the Healthcare Authority for Baptist Health; Prattville, Ala.-based Jackson Hospital & Clinic; and Jackson Surgery Center. After an administrative law judge twice recommended denying approval, it secured the judge's recommendation June 29, and the certificate of need review board approved the application July 22. 

The providers who opposed the project said it will lead to an "unnecessary duplication of services." Baptist South, for example, already has three cardiac catheterization labs, according to documents presented by the opposing providers, and has seen a decline in outpatient catheterization cases in the last three years. 

The opposing providers also expressed concern that the ASC would shift needed resources and revenue away from hospitals. 

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