Turf war erupting over MUSC's expansion

Alia Paavola - Print  | 

Several health systems are objecting to Charleston-based Medical University of South Carolina's plan to build a new hospital in Berkeley County, arguing it would put them in financial jeopardy, according to The Post and Courier. 

Roper St. Francis and Trident Health, both based in Charleston, said that the proposed hospital will interfere with their own plans to expand. 

MUSC secured approval for the hospital from the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control in 2018. 

Shortly after, Roper St. Francis and Trident Health sued, arguing the health department should have never given the OK, because both of the objecting hospital groups had already obtained permission to build smaller, 50-bed hospitals in the county.

An administrative law trial to resolve the dispute is set to begin Nov. 4.

Bret Johnson, CFO of Roper St. Francis, told The Post and Courier that said the MUSC hospital would be "oversized and unnecessary" and would "seriously threaten the financial viability" of its new facility.

Sheila Champlin, a MUSC spokesperson, told The Post and Courier that the system needs more beds. 

"We are operating at 100 percent capacity, with many patients who want to come to MUSC providers having to wait or be turned away," she said. "This new hospital will allow MUSC to provide care in a fast-growing community."

MUSC is prepared to start the project as soon as the issue is resolved, according to the report. 

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