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Northside Hospital announced on Monday that it has won an appeal a previous denial of a Certificate of Need permit for an outpatient surgery center it wants to operate at this existing facility on Friendship Road in Braselton.

A state appeals panel has given Northside Hospital its blessing to build an outpatient surgery center in Braselton.

The Georgia Certificate of Need Appeal Panel decision is being hailed by the hospital system — which has hospital campuses in Lawrenceville and Duluth — as a win for patients in northeast Georgia. The Department of Community Health denied Northside’s Certificate of Need request to build the center in 2018 and the hospital system had been appealing the decision since then.

Georgia Department of Community Health Commissioner Caylee Noggle will have to rule on the panel’s decision before construction on surgery center can begin, however, according to Northside officials.

“We believe the availability of an outpatient surgery during a pandemic is critical,” said Debbie Mitcham, the president and CEO of Northside’s Gwinnett campuses. “As metropolitan Atlanta grows into Northeast Georgia, patients need a choice when it comes to meeting their surgical needs.”

Northside expects the 22,5000-square-foot surgery center will serve patients from across a 13-county region who currently have to drive to other Northside locations for outpatient surgery. The hospital system also expects about 3,400 patients will be served annually at the center.

The center will be built in an existing facility on Friendship Road in southern Hall County, and have three operating rooms and one endoscopy room. Services offered at the center include orthopedics, urology, gastroenterology, general surgery and neurosurgery as well as other services. It will also have an extended recovery unit so complex surgical procedures can be performed there.

I'm a Crawford Long baby who grew up in Marietta and eventually wandered to the University of Southern Mississippi for college. Earned a BA in journalism (double minor in political science and history). Previously worked in Florida and Clayton County.

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