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Cancer Center Bill Gets Chilly Reception

Hospital officials spoke out in opposition to the legislation.

Representatives of the state’s major hospitals testified Tuesday against a bill that would clear the way for a for-profit cancer center to move to New Hampshire, according to the Union Leader.

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Marilinda Garcia, R-Salem, would create a special "destination cancer hospital" classification that would be exempt from the state's review process for new hospitals, among other things. Cancer Treatment Centers of America wants to see the bill pass as it explores establishing a center along Interstate 93 in Southern New Hampshire.

While the bill has the support of the House leadership, the Union Leader said backers were far outnumbered at the hearing by executives, doctors and other officials from the state’s major hospitals, along with their lobbyists.

Garcia and four other New Hampshire lawmakers that Cancer Treatment Centers of America paid around $300 each to fly them to Pennsylvania to tour their facility there.

Jeff Hatch February 09, 2012 at 08:37 AM
@ Don, As it was explained to me by many of our St. Reps that I contacted and through past postings on Patch. This center isn't a full scale hospital therefore is asking to be exempt from meeting the requiremnts that of a full scale facility. As for them only providing services to those that can pay or have insurance. I say ok as long as they don't receive any State or Federal funds.
Don Duston February 09, 2012 at 01:19 PM
@Jeff, this is medicine for the rich and for those fortunate enough to have rich health insurance plans (like our Town employees). To say a hospital should be allowed to be exempt because they are not full scale would be like the Town granting a major tax break for a retail store because all they sell is wide screen TV's. Would this be fair to Best Buy and Barron's that sell appliances and all kinds of electronics? Even in MA, when Steward Health Care bought the Caritas chain, the Attorney General required Steward to provide a percentage of free care. Cancer Centers of America is going to set up clinic/hospital that will compete directly with area hospitals and they will be allowed to accept only the cream of the crop patients (this is health care rationing) while their competitors are required to provide free care to indigent patients. How fair is that? I say if Cancer Centers of America wants to do business in NH that it play by the same rules as their competition or those rules should be changed for all the players, one entity should NOT be singled out for special treatment (no pun intended).
Jeff Hatch February 09, 2012 at 01:34 PM
I'm not going to disagree with you here. It is what it is. It's more lilke some one opening up a high end retail store exempting them from some the required building or buissness permits. Some may even call it class warfare others may consider it free enterprise. It depends on what side of the coin your on or if your lucky enough to afford the cost of a good health insurance plan. So I understand what your saying and have some of the same concerns because how wide spread cancer is and how it effects us all.
Jane February 09, 2012 at 01:54 PM
Don - your right! HB1617 is on to repeal the CON for all!
Jimmy Duyon February 14, 2012 at 04:04 AM
I support Marilinda's efforts to foster job creation and innovation in our great state!

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