Despite objections, UNC Health's proposed $252M hospital approved by state regulators

UNC Health's plan for a 40-bed hospital in the Durham, N.C., portion of Research Triangle Park was approved by state regulators, The News & Observer reported Sept. 29.

Additions will include two operating rooms, a 24-hour emergency department and an obstetrical unit with two C-section operating rooms

The hospital — which plans to open in 2026 — will employ 300 people.

"UNC Health looks forward to adding health services in southern Durham County, which has been without significant medical options for local residents who live and work in the area," hospital spokesperson Alan Wolf wrote in a statement.

Some are opposed to the plan and could appeal it in court, such as Duke Health, which proposed a plan with 40 inpatient beds and two operating rooms at Duke University Hospital in Durham. It also proposed two operating rooms at Arringdon Ambulatory Surgery Center in Morrisville.

North Carolina requires health systems to have a certificate of need for such projects in an effort to limit duplicative services and ensure new facilities meet a community need. The state health department determined Durham County has a deficit of 40 beds, which both systems were vying to fill.

Raleigh, N.C.-based WakeMed is also against UNC Health's plan. UNC told regulators that it would only pull 9.2 percent of patients from Wake County, but WakeMed said it will be more.

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