Atrium, Novant battle for hospital beds in North Carolina

Charlotte, N.C.-based Atrium Health and Novant Health, the biggest health systems in Charlotte, are competing to add more hospital beds in Mecklenburg County, the Charlotte Business Journal reported Oct. 25.

A spokesperson for Atrium Health told Becker's that it made an application to add 123 new acute care beds in Mecklenburg County, which is what the county will need by 2023. These beds would be at Atrium Health Pineville, Atrium Health University City and Atrium Health Carolinas Medical Center. In total, the plan would cost about $158 million, according to the Charlotte Business Journal.

The plan still needs approval from state regulators. In an effort to keep costs down, North Carolina does not allow hospitals to add new beds without state approval.

"Atrium Health is extremely proud to be able to continue serving the needs of our communities through growth and enhanced offerings," the Atrium Health spokesperson said. "Even throughout the pandemic, our teams have been carefully studying the marketplace and designing plans to meet the growing demands in one of America's fastest-growing cities."

Novant Health in Winston-Salem, N.C., filed a rival application, which would add 22 beds to Charlotte's Presbyterian Medical Center as part of a $289,400 project, according to the Charlotte Business Journal.

Novant Health did not immediately respond to Becker's request for comment.

Both health systems have been rapidly expanding in the Charlotte area. Atrium will soon open its first ground-up hospital in 30 years, Atrium Health Union West in nearby Stallings, N.C, as well as a new bed tower at Atrium Health Pineville, according to the spokesperson.

Novant Health broke ground on its $180 million Ballantyne Medical Center in Charlotte this year, which is scheduled to open in 2023, the article said.

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