Virginia Beach, VA – May 30, 2007
– Sentara Healthcare today filed a letter of intent with the Eastern Virginia Health Systems Agency and the Virginia Department of Health to seek a Certificate of Public Need (COPN) for Sentara Princess Anne Hospital.
“A hospital has been part of the master plan for the Princess Anne campus for almost seven years,” says Stephen D. Porter, vice president and administrator of the Sentara Princess Anne campus
and Sentara Bayside Hospital
“Sentara Princess Anne Hospital will be the cornerstone of the campus we developed in partnership with the city to bring state-of-the-art health care to southern Virginia Beach.”
The filing of a Letter of Intent starts the application and review process by the Virginia Department of Health. Sentara plans to transfer the 158 inpatient beds from Sentara Bayside Hospital to Sentara Princess Anne. The earliest a new hospital could be opened is 2011. Until then, Sentara Bayside remains a full-service hospital.
Once the new hospital is open, Sentara Bayside will become a robust outpatient campus including a 24-hour emergency department, advanced imaging with a high-strength open MRI and CT, physical therapy, blood draw laboratory and other services as needs develop.
“The population growth pattern in Virginia Beach is south,” Steve Porter continues. “Travel times to existing hospitals for southern Virginia Beach residents can be up to 40 minutes and Sentara Princess Anne Hospital can cut that time in half.”
Sentara Princess Anne has already been well-received, with almost 20,000 visits to its free-standing 24-hour emergency department since it opened last September. Also, close to 1,000 patients have been admitted to area hospitals through the Princess Anne emergency department, which speaks to the need for a hospital to complete the campus.
“Virginia Beach City Council endorsed this plan by resolution in 2004,” Steve Porter recalls. “We’re proud of Sentara’s collaboration with the city and we hope to complete our master plan by receiving a state COPN for Princess Anne Hospital.” Additional inpatient beds to be sought for Sentara Obici Hospital
A second letter of intent, to be filed, will seek expansion of inpatient beds at Sentara Obici Hospital in Suffolk. Obici continues to experience high occupancy rates since opening at the new location on Godwin Boulevard in 2002 and the rapid population growth now taking place in western Tidewater demonstrates the need for expansion on this campus. 29/2007