After Political Battle, Delaware Rehabilitation Hospital to Set to Open

Gov. Jack Markell is celebrating the grand opening of a HealthSouth rehabilitation hospital in Middletown after steering its controversial approval through state government.

Markell planned to join Healthsouth executives and other elected officials for Friday's grand opening.

Plans for the 34-bed hospital prompted accusations of political meddling by Markell, who pushed for the project even though a review committee of the state Health Resources Board recommended against it. The project was approved only after Markell replaced two members of the review committee and several other members of the board, including its chairman, resigned in protest.

After Delaware's Supreme Court said a Middletown nursing home operator could challenge the HealthSouth application, Markell pushed a bill through the legislature last year circumventing Delaware's courts to get the hospital built without further review.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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