Maryland Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. (D-Calvert) is calling on Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III (D) and other elected officials to band together to thwart the efforts of those who “seek to destroy” a long-planned regional hospital center.
Miller’s letter to county lawmakers came in response to a column in the Capital Gazette last week by Michael Collins, a Republican activist from Anne Arundel County.
Collins wrote in support of a proposal to open a cardiac-surgery program at Anne Arundel County Medical Center, a project that could compete for patients with the Prince George’s Regional Medical Center that is planned for Largo. Collins called the Prince George’s project, a joint effort between the county and the University of Maryland Medical Center that is awaiting state approval, a “Taj Mahal.”
Miller’s letter said he was concerned about the “partisan drivel” in the column and the Maryland Health Care Commission’s selection of Robert Moffitt, a Republican who lives in Anne Arundel County, as the hearing examiner for the required certificate of need for the Prince George’s project.
Earlier this year, Moffitt called for the Prince George’s project to be scaled down. A revised proposal is expected by the end of this month.
“I believe that we stand at a precipice regarding the future of this project,” Miller said in the letter. “Our two decade fight for a solution to the failing Prince George’s hospital system may well not be over.”
Miller said Prince George’s should not have to wait for a new health-care facility, and he compared delays to the county’s four-year wait to build a casino at National Harbor so casinos in Anne Arundel County and Baltimore City could become established.
“In this instance, we must also insist in the denial or delay of any duplication of new and competing services with the resulting siphoning off patients to other regional hospitals prior to a shovel even being placed in the ground” for the Prince George’s Regional Medical Center, Miller wrote.