2014 Georgia Code
Title 31 - HEALTH
§ 31-6-40.1 - Acquisition of health care facilities; penalty for failure to notify the department; limitation on applications; agreement to care for indigent patients; requirements for destination cancer hospitals; notice and hearing provisions for penalties authorized under this Code section

GA Code § 31-6-40.1 (2014) What's This?

(a) Any person who acquires a health care facility by stock or asset purchase, merger, consolidation, or other lawful means shall notify the department of such acquisition, the date thereof, and the name and address of the acquiring person. Such notification shall be made in writing to the department within 45 days following the acquisition and the acquiring person may be fined by the department in the amount of $500.00 for each day that such notification is late. Such fine shall be paid into the state treasury.

(b) The department may limit the time periods during which it will accept applications for the following health care facilities:

(1) Skilled nursing facilities;

(2) Intermediate care facilities; and

(3) Home health agencies,

to only such times after the department has determined there is an unmet need for such facilities. The department shall make a determination as to whether or not there is an unmet need for each type of facility at least every six months and shall notify those requesting such notification of that determination.

(b.1) The department may establish, by rule, set times during the year in which applications for capital projects exceeding the threshold amounts in:

(1) Paragraph (14) of Code Section 31-6-2; and

(2) Paragraph (2) or (3) of subsection (a) of Code Section 31-6-40 shall be accepted.

(c) The department may require that any applicant for a certificate of need agree to provide a specified amount of clinical health services to indigent patients as a condition for the grant of a certificate of need; provided, however, that each facility granted a certificate of need by the department as a destination cancer hospital shall be required to provide uncompensated indigent or charity care for residents of Georgia which meets or exceeds 3 percent of such destination cancer hospital's adjusted gross revenues and provide care to Medicaid beneficiaries. A grantee or successor in interest of a certificate of need or an authorization to operate under this chapter which violates such an agreement or violates any conditions imposed by the department relating to such services, whether made before or after July 1, 2008, shall be liable to the department for a monetary penalty in the amount of the difference between the amount of services so agreed to be provided and the amount actually provided and may be subject to revocation of its certificate of need, in whole or in part, by the department pursuant to Code Section 31-6-45. Any penalty so recovered shall be paid into the state treasury.

(c.1) (1) A destination cancer hospital that does not meet an annual patient base composed of a minimum of 65 percent of patients who reside outside this state in a calendar year shall be fined $2 million for the first year of noncompliance, $4 million for the second consecutive year of noncompliance, and $6 million for the third consecutive year of noncompliance. Such fine amount shall reset to $2 million after any year of compliance. In the event that a destination cancer hospital does not meet an annual patient base composed of a minimum of 65 percent of patients who reside outside this state for three calendar years in any five-year period, such hospital shall be fined an additional amount of $8 million. It is the intent of the General Assembly that all revenues collected from any such fines shall be dedicated and deposited by the department into the Indigent Care Trust Fund created pursuant to Code Section 31-8-152.

(2) In the event a certificate of need for a destination cancer hospital is revoked pursuant to this subsection, such hospital shall be subject to fines pursuant to subsection (c) of Code Section 31-6-45 for operating without a certificate of need.

(3) In addition to the annual report required pursuant to Code Section 31-6-70, a destination cancer hospital shall submit an annual statement, in accordance with timeframes and a format specified by the department, affirming that the hospital has met an annual patient base composed of a minimum of 65 percent of patients who reside outside this state. The chief executive officer of the destination cancer hospital shall certify under penalties of perjury that the statement as prepared accurately reflects the composition of the annual patient base. The department shall have the authority to inspect any books, records, papers, or other information pursuant to subsection (e) of Code Section 31-6-45 of the destination cancer hospital to confirm the information provided on such statement or any other information required of the destination cancer hospital. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to require the release of any information which would violate the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, P.L. 104-191.

(d) Penalties authorized under this Code section shall be subject to the same notices and hearing for the levy of fines under Code Section 31-6-45.

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