Local News

WakeMed, Rex to battle Novant for hospital beds

Posted July 29, 2008 3:52 p.m. EDT
Updated July 30, 2008 11:13 a.m. EDT

— A week after a company proposed building a hospital in Holly Springs, WakeMed said it plans to transform its medical center in north Raleigh into a women's hospital and Rex Healthcare plans to expand its obstetrics and surgery departments.

The catch is that all three hospital groups are going after the same beds that state regulators have approved for the area.

Novant Health, WakeMed and Rex plan to file certificates of need with the state Division of Health Service Regulation on Aug. 15. The division has approved 41 new hospital beds for Wake County and will begin reviewing proposals in September.

Novant last week announced plans for a 46-bed hospital in Holly Springs, which officials said would create 200 jobs in the town.

WakeMed wants to transition its North Healthplex, at the intersection of Falls of Neuse and Durant roads, into the county's first full-service women's hospital, spokeswoman Heather Monackey said.

The 6-year-old north Raleigh facility already has been approved for 20 beds – WakeMed is moving them from its main campus – and hospital system officials would like the additional beds to expand obstetrics services and to provide specialized health care to the area's growing female population, Monackey said.

The North Healthplex currently offers a stand-alone emergency room, as well as radiology and rehabilitation services and four operating rooms for outpatient surgeries.

Rex wants to use 26 beds for obstetrics and 15 for medical and surgery patients, noting growing volume in both departments in recent years.