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Split Michigan Senate OKs changes to regulation of hospitals

Hospital sign
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A split Michigan Senate has approved changes to the process by which hospitals can do multi-million dollar construction or renovation projects. Senators also voted Wednesday to exempt hospitals from needing state regulatory approval to add psychiatric beds. The Republican-sponsored bills go to the House for consideration next. The legislation would change what's known as the certificate of need program, which is intended to ensure only needed health services are added in Michigan. The law now requires hospitals, nursing homes and surgical outpatient facilities to secure approval before doing capital expenditure projects exceeding roughly $3.3 million. One bill would eliminate the requirement.