John Locke Update / Amicus Brief

John Locke Foundation Files Amicus Brief In Case Challenging Certificate-of-Need Law

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The John Locke Foundation has filed an amicus brief in Singh v. NCDHHS, the lawsuit filed against the state of North Carolina by Winston-Salem surgeon Dr. Gajendra Singh. The brief was filed in Wake County Superior Court and was written by Jon Guze, JLF’s director of legal studies and a licensed attorney who practiced for 20 years in Durham before joining the foundation.

Dr. Singh contends the state’s Certificate-of-Need (CON) law is unconstitutional and infringes on his right to serve his patients. He is challenging the law related to Magnetic Resonance Imaging machines, or MRIs. CON law requires doctors and hospitals to get permission from the state before they can purchase new equipment and/or expand facilities and offerings. The state, not the doctor or hospital, determines what is ‘needed’ and what is not.

“Not only is the CON law unconstitutional as Dr. Singh asserts, but it directly harms patients and taxpayers by making health care more expensive and less accessible,” Guze said. “Our friend-of-the-court brief responds to the state’s motion to dismiss this case. We show that, contrary to the state’s claims, Dr. Singh has indeed suffered direct injury, and will continue to suffer injury, as a result of the CON law. Each of his constitutional claims is supported by law.”

The brief also provides evidence that CON laws restrict access to health care and increase costs.

Scroll through the brief below, or read/download a printable version at right.

Jon Guze is Director of Legal Studies at the John Locke Foundation. Before joining the John Locke Foundation, Jon practiced law in Durham, North Carolina for over 20 years. He received a J.D., with honors, from Duke Law School in… ...

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About John Locke Foundation

We are North Carolina’s Most Trusted and Influential Source of Common Sense. The John Locke Foundation was created in 1990 as an independent, nonprofit think tank that would work “for truth, for freedom, and for the future of North Carolina.” The Foundation is named for John Locke (1632-1704), an English philosopher whose writings inspired Thomas Jefferson and the other Founders.

The John Locke Foundation is a 501(c)(3) research institute and is funded solely from voluntary contributions from individuals, corporations, and charitable foundations.