Virginia hospital approved to start open-heart surgery program

Chesapeake (Va.) Regional Medical Center has been approved to launch an open-heart surgery program.

The hospital will begin installing equipment and recruiting staff immediately, according to a Jan. 8 news release from Chesapeake Regional Healthcare. The program is expected to accept its first patients in early 2024.

The state health commissioner approved the center's certificate of public need nearly five years after the hospital's initial request. The initial request was denied by the previous commissioner. Chesapeake Regional Medical Center contested the ruling and in May, the Supreme Court of Virginia ruled that the former state health commissioner erred in his denial.

The commissioner's approval included assertions that the open-heart program would inject competition in the market, improve patient choice and reduce healthcare costs without reducing surgery volumes of other hospitals programs in the planning district, according to the release.

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