The Florida Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) approved a plan in which Sunrise Community will build an intermediate care facility (ICF) for people with intellectual/developmental disabilities (I/DD) in Madison County. The $10.5 million facility will be built in the next 18 months. The facility will have three separate 8-bed homes. The beds will be reserved for individuals who require increased levels of behavioral, medical, and therapeutic oversight because of severe maladaptive behavior. AHCA issued the decision on May 6, 2022.

Due to a new state law adopted in 2020, the Sunrise Community facility did not require a certificate of need (CON) because the plans qualified for an exemption created by Florida Senate Bill 1344 of 2020. Normally new ICFs for people with I/DD and nursing homes require a CON. The exemption applies only to entities that have had at least 10 years of experience serving people in Florida with severe maladaptive behaviors. Additionally, only provider organizations that have had a clean record for three years can apply for the exemption.

AHCA has four CON “batching cycles” annually where CON applications are competitively reviewed by Florida health care regulators. Two batching cycles are for hospice services and two cycles are for nursing homes and ICF I/DD beds. Each batching cycle begins with the state determining and publishing the “need” for new services across the state. Provider organizations interested in offering the services must submit a letter of intent to the state 30 days before the CON application is due.

The CON exemption law, Florida Senate Bill 1344, expires on July 1, 2022. More information is at (accessed May 31, 2022).

This was reported by Florida Politics on May 12, 2022, at (accessed May 31, 2022).

Contact information: Mallory McManus, Communications Director, Florida Agency for Health Care Administration, 2727 Mahan Drive, Tallahassee, Florida 32308; 850-412-3623; Email:; Website:

Contact information: Sunrise Community, Inc., 9040 Sunset Drive, Miami, FL 33173; 305-596-9040; Fax: 305-598-8240; Email:; Website:

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