Physician Hospitals of America and Texas Spine and Joint Hospital Challenge Section 6001 in the Eastern District of Texas
WASHINGTON, Feb. 15, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Physician Hospitals of America (PHA) and Texas Spine and Joint Hospital (TSJH) filed their second motion Monday requesting Section 6001 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) be declared unconstitutional. Section 6001 restricts physician owned hospitals' (POHs) rights to compete by prohibiting any new construction or expansion projects. This motion asks that the recent judgment in Florida, which declares the entirety of PPACA unconstitutional and therefore unenforceable, also be applied in Texas.
The motion was filed in the Eastern District of Texas, but could assist all 285 POHs in 34 states. "If the Florida judgment is accepted in Texas, it opens the doors for other physician owned hospitals across the country to seek similar relief in their communities," stated McGuireWoods lead attorney Scott Oostdyk.
On January 31st the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida declared that PPACA was unlawful in its entirety because Congress expressed no intent that other sections of the law should survive independently if a core provision like Section 1501, a key source of financing for patients added into coverage by the law, were to be nullified in the courts.
PHA President Dr. Michael Russell added, "Physician owned hospitals are the only hospitals subject to these construction limitations. To effectively compete and provide the level of care we are capable of, we need the right to complete our hospitals under construction, finish our expansion projects and expand a model of ownership that the government's own data proves delivers the highest quality of healthcare to the patients we serve."
There are currently 285 physician owned hospitals serving patients in 34 states. These hospitals include general acute care, long term acute care, emergency medicine, multispecialty, women's, children's, rehabilitation and psychiatric. According to the government's HCAHPS survey data, physician owned hospitals rank first for quality in 19 states.
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