On February 15, 2009, a comprehensive revision of the Virginia Department of Health’s State Medical Facilities Plan (“SMFP”) became effective. Some of the changes in these regulations may affect your plans for adding and/or expanding operating rooms.
Need for Surgical Services. In determining the future need for new inpatient or outpatient general purpose operating rooms in a particular planning district, the Department will continue to consider the need generated by the total operating room visits in the most recent five years, the sum of the district’s population for the same five years, the projected population of the planning district five years from the current year, and the average hours per operating room visit in the last year, including prep and clean-up. The standard renews 1,600 hours per operating room. VHI is now collecting this information for both inpatient and outpatient surgical units.
Projects involving the relocation of existing operating rooms within a health planning district may be authorized when it can be reasonably documented that such relocation will (i)improve the distribution of surgical services within a health planning district; (ii) result in the provision of the same surgical services at a lower cost to surgical patients in the health planning district; or (iii) optimize the number of operations in the health planning district that are performed on an outpatient basis.
Please contact Mellette PC if you have any questions about the impact of the SMFP regulations on future projects.