The Special Session

The tipline says the Governor is going to do a combined special session for CON reform and the supplemental, which the tipster suggests will put hospitals on the side of an override and adjourn.


  1. Icarus says:

    CON = Certificate of Need. (for a hospital, or a surgery center). Jeez Bull, keep asking questions like that and it’s going to be harder than ever to get you freed.

  2. bowersville says:

    Not trying to be a s/a, google CON reform and you can find some background on it. They do a much better job than I can on why CON reform is controversial.

  3. It essentially boils down to this: hospitals perform a number of procedures, some profitable and some not. In order for a hospital to purchase the expensive machines (such as MRI’s) they need to do those procedures, they must get a CON from the state.

    During the CON process, particularly for profitable procedures, the state has leverage to extract promises from the hospital to also do the less profitable procedures and where they do it, for instance Emory had a CON a while back where as part of the process for getting what Emory wanted they had to promise to beef up some operations at the Paulding County Grady affiliate hospital (I believe).

    CON “reform” means that anyone (hospitals/doctors offices/cancer centers of america) could purchase whatever machines they want. Doctors and corporations are smart enough to figure out what procedures are profitable and what aren’t. Rural areas in particular would be hard hit as hospitals either convert to profit shops or some doctors leave the hospitals and open up their own.

    CON helps to guarantee that underserved medical areas will still have access to medical procedures even if they aren’t profitable for the company offering them. Legitimate hospitals are against CON because they know they’ll be stuck being full service providers while their best doctors can jump ship and open up their own roadside medicine stands.

  4. jillchambers says:

    The US Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission have both found that Certificate of Need is simply government rationing of health care. DOJ & FTC both support total repeal of CON.

    Hospitals improve their profit margins by cost shifting and cross subsidizing which results in higher insurance premiums.

    for some “light” reading on this subject:

    a two page report from GSU:

    and a more detailed report:

    in the interest of full disclosure, I dropped the CON repeal legisaltion this year, HB 263.

    HB 425 addresses the cost shifting to insured patients by requiring hospitals to disclose their pricing tiers.

    If you examine the tax forms of non-profit hospitals, you will find that many own for-profit subsidiaries to hide profits. Some hospitals have even opened up off-shore bank accounts to hide their money. posts the IRS Form 990 for non-profits. After examining the 990’s of many Georgia Hospitals, I submitted HB 427.

    Kudos to State Rep. Austin Scott for doing much of this research and sharing his knowledge with the legislature – he knows far more about this issue than I do!

  5. Whosthereallapdog? says:

    The tipline says the Gov is going to introduce CON in the special session huh? Did the tipline mention anything about the house introducing the Dunwoody bill? The bottom line is no matter what is introduced we need a budget that all can agree on. We clearly have the more level headed Cagle willing to work with the Gov. I’m not sure why this is but I have my ideas.

    Just a theory…but is the real reason the House is all of the sudden less willing to compromise not because of their new found fiscal conservatism, but really a power play by Keen and Burkhalter. Remember the rumors of Burkhalter toying with the idea of challenging the speaker before the story of the speaker and the lobbyist hit the airwaves. Are Burkhalter and Keen pulling strings behind the scene to lay the foundations for a
    08 challenge of the Speaker? Do they have more dirt on the speaker?

    The big picture is more disturbing for real GOPers because the situation could rip the party apart. The Dems have to be loving this. Glenn thinks he should be the Gov in 2010 when Cagle is the only one who has shown the leadership to be the Gov in 2010. Glenn has proven that he lacks the coalition building skills within his own house to be a real leader. I wonder how much support he would have if he didn’t hold fundraising help and leadership positions over the heads of members in his caucus. You don’t hear the same being said of Cagle on the Senate side.

  6. joe says:

    Whosthereallapdog? Posting the exact same paragraphs on two threads here and another thread on a different site does not make you seem more believable. It just makes you look foolish and lazy.

  7. bowersville says:

    Just a theory…the House votes to override the veto in special session, gavels the House to a close and goes home. The Senate leadership decides there is a 60 day window for the transmittal of the veto, and takes no action.

    So the truth of the matter is, who’s the real lap dog?

    Are you “liberty chic” at

  8. Doug Deal says:


    I agree. I am shocked to hear people who call themselves conservatives to use the argument that it is needed to help protect hospitals like Emory from “road side medical stands”.

    If it is okay to use that justification for this issue, why not everything. Don’t stores like Best Buy and Wal*Mart crush neighborhood stores? Maybe we should make grociery and electronic stores file a Certificate of Need when they deside to sell certain types of food or electronics.

    Isn’t food an even more important basic need as compared to medical care?

  9. Demonbeck says:

    I am sorry CVS, but your request to sell Aspirin and Cough Syrup has been denied. Wal-Greens is clearly covering the needs of Savannah in that regard already.


    The State of Georgia

  10. Inside_Man says:

    Chrishardcores and anyone’s paragraph summation of the arguments for and against CON can’t do the subject justice. This issue definitely in the running for most complicated the Assembly will deal with during the careers of most of our legislators. It took the House SCCON committee eighteen hours just to go over the provisions in the three main CON bills that were heard, much less debate their merits. No bones about it, CON is a mess of the state’s creation, but the process has shaped the market we live in since the 1970s. My point is, it would be a big mistake to attempt CON reform in the space of a special session. Any resulting legislation would be hastily thrown together and would probably cause a lot of unforeseen problems down the road.

  11. Redcatcher says:

    Most people do not understand how complex the Health Care world is. I attended the SCCON meetings and even after all the information they received very few really understood. Let me put it this was. You are a surgeon and you open your own surgery center. Who are you going to refer to that center? One who has no insurance. One who is in poor health. One who has good insurance and good health. Which would you choose? Then who gets to treat the ones who have no insurance? The hospitals do and why? Because they are required to by Federal Regulation. It has been estimated that a conservative number of the cost of regulation on health care is $169 Billion per year.

    Health is the most regulated industry in the country and the most misunderstood. The manage care companies have created a nightmare, but no one seems to look to their practices. How much real green have the CMOs taken in the Governors little plan? Bet you cant find out.

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