North Carolina's CON Law Key Culprit Behind High Healthcare Costs

Date: May 17, 2016 Last Edit: May 18, 2016

Oppressive regulation strangles healthcare access.

North Carolina’s CON Law Key Culprit Behind High Healthcare Costs

With healthcare costs increasing each year,
North Carolina should be concentrating on increasing competition and
innovation—and yet, the state’s burdensome certificate of need law does exactly
the opposite.

Under current law, medical providers must gain
approval from the State Health Coordinating Council before building or
expanding an existing healthcare facility, offering new services, or updating
medical equipment. Essentially, North Carolina’s healthcare supply is limited
to whether or not state regulators decide a “need” is warranted.

 The initial theory behind CON law is that
restricting the healthcare market will prevent overinvestment; restricting
competition will increase costs for some, and this profit will be used to
provide increased care to the poor. However, according to a 2015 study from the Mercatus Institute, 40 years of evidence have proven that these intended outcomes
have not come to pass. In North Carolina—which has the fourth most restrictive
CON law in the country, regulating more than 25 services—the law could result
in 12,900 fewer hospital beds, 49 fewer hospitals offering MRI services, and 67
fewer hospitals offering computed tomography scans. Ultimately, the CON law means
fewer healthcare options, no increased care for the poor, and higher costs.

 Efforts have been made in the past to reform the
law, but only a full repeal can truly increase competition, innovation, and
access to care, as well as lower costs in the process.

Learn more at, the John Locke Foundation’s campaign against North Carolina’s
CON law.

Related Content: News | Healthcare | North Carolina

Subscribe For Free News And Tips

Enter your email to get FREE small business insights. Learn more

Get to know NFIB

NFIB is a member-driven organization advocating on behalf of small and independent businesses nationwide.

Learn More

Or call us today

© 2001 - 2021 National Federation of Independent Business. All Rights Reserved. Terms and Conditions | Privacy