Overview

A State-granted Certificate of Public Advantage (COPA) has afforded Mission Health System almost absolute control of the Buncombe County health care market and immunity from State and Federal antitrust laws. In return for this protection, the State is required to actively supervise Mission’s conduct. Under the COPA, Mission has significant incentives to aggressively compete with small community hospitals, acquire physician practices and ultimately consolidate specialty services on its Asheville campus.

The current COPA no longer provides adequate protection for patients, commercial payers and providers in Buncombe County and throughout the region. The COPA has existed more than 15 years without significant study or modification. Time and inattention have allowed Mission Health System to operate unchecked, all the while acquiring hospitals, private physician practices and growing its market share throughout Western North Carolina. Building on a near monopoly in Buncombe County, Mission’s focus has shifted to unregulated markets outside any COPA restrictions.

A comprehensive analysis from a credible, independent economist reinforced these concerns and the report’s conclusions demand action to correct problems that will only get worse in the future. While this is admittedly a complicated issue, the need for patient access and choice demand that the COPA be updated and strengthened to better reflect the region’s changing healthcare landscape.

Explore this website for complete information on this important issue.

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News Updates

October 21 - Asheville's Mission Hospital asks state to ease restrictions on competition .

October 20 - House Committee hears heated discussions on Mission's COPA agreement .

October 20 - Keep patients in mind, some speakers tell legislative committee at public meeting .

October 16 - Mission Affiliations.

October 15 - Economists, officials duel over Mission in Asheville and 'monopoly' question .

October 9 - Hospital wars: Mergers mean survival in Asheville area .

October 8 - Hospital wars: The battle for patients in the Asheville area .

September 16 - General Assembly looking at system governing hospital expansions, mergers .

August 30 - Citizen-Times reports Mission denied Certificate of Need to move Endoscopy to Fletcher..

August 26 - Mission denied Certificate of Need to move Endoscopy Center into Fletcher..

August 26 - North Carolina appoints committee to investigate Hospital growth throughout region!.

July 19 - Pardee Letter to employees staging support of County Line project.

June 6 - Southeastern Sports Medicine and Dr. Keith Maxwell join the WNC Community Healthcare Initiative! Welcome!.

May 25 - Hospital Asks for Protection - Times News.

May 24 - UNC Health Says Pardee Needs Affiliation- Times News.

May 24 - Relocation of Asheville-Based Mission Hospital's Endoscopy Unit Debated- Citizen-Times.

May 24 - Pardee Chairman Says County Can't Support Two Facilities - Times News.

May 24 - WNC CHI appeals to Governor Perdue to Protect WNC from Mission's out-of-control expansion..

May 21 - Asheville's Mission to Manage Angel Medical Center - Citizen-Times.

May 20 - Community Members speak out about Mission's latest expansion CON. See YouTube for videos..