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Department of Health | Health Facilities | Certificate of Need and Facility Licensing

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Certificate of Need Decisions

Full reviews of Certificate of Need applications are conducted by the State Health Planning Board, while expedited reviews are conducted by the Deputy Commissioner of Health Systems.

Full review decisions

Expedited review decisions

Certificate of Need and Facility Licensing

Certificate of Need

Certificate of Need is a regulatory process that governs the construction, relocation or renovation of certain healthcare facilities. The Certificate of Need program helps ensure that new facilities, or the expansion of existing facilities, meet the needs of the community. This helps to avoid investment in duplicate facilities.

A Certificate of Need Application begins an extensive review and separate approval processes for each type of application.

The State Health Planning Board acts as an advisory panel to the Commissioner concerning recommendations on certificate of need applications.

Certificate of Need forms and applications

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Full Review vs. Expedited Review

The Certificate of Need Application and Review Process is governed by Chapter 8, Section 33 of the New Jersey Administrative Code (N.J.A.C. 8:33).

The full Certificate of Need review process is extensive and required for the construction, relocation, or renovation of certain healthcare facilities. There are separate approval processes for each type of Certificate of Need application. The Department of Health presents its recommendation on each Certificate of Need to the State Health Planning Board, which acts as an advisory panel to the Commissioner of Health concerning recommendations on certificate of need applications.

New Jersey law permits Expedited Review of Certificate of Need (ERCN) applications by the Department of Health, in lieu of the full review process, in certain circumstances set forth in N.J.A.C. 8:33-5. The expedited review process is less intensive. Each ERCN is evaluated by the Deputy Commissioner of Health Systems and the State Health Planning Board is not involved in the process.

The table below includes the most common scenarios that require either a full or expedited Certificate of Need review. It is intended as an informational guideline only and not as a comprehensive reference.

Full Review Required     Eligible for Expedited Review
(excluding facility and project types listed under "full review," unless otherwise noted)   
Long term care projects, including general long-term care, ventilators and pediatric long-term care    Establishment of a facility or service   
Rehabilitation beds    New assisted living facilities   
Maternal and child health projects    Change in capacity of an existing facility or service   
Pediatric intensive care    Acquisition or replacement of major moveable equipment   
Children's hospitals    Change in scope or location   
Psychiatric beds    Change in cost   
Transplantation services    Extension of time   
Mobile intensive care units    Transfer of ownership of a general hospital   
Trauma units     
Home health     
Burn centers and programs     
New general hospitals     
Capacity changes to hospital sub-acute care units     
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Health Facility Licensing

NJDOH licenses more than 2,000 regulated facilities statewide.  These include hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living residences, ambulatory care centers, home health care, medical day care and other types of health care facilities ( complete list).  The licensing program licenses health care facilities in accordance with state and federal regulations.

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Last Reviewed: 12/1/2017

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