The Medical Office Building (MOB) marketplace has been largely sluggish since witnessing unprecedented highs during 2006-08. However due to ACA, millions more will gain access to health insurance and thus, graduate to medical care. This will cause increased need for more patient facilities, hospitals, clinics and even community care centers, catalyzing the MOB marketplace. This trend is expected to prevail throughout 2013 and beyond.
Employ-ability Galore: Non-acute Units Can Spell Acute Employment Opportunities
States are predicting the need for more urgent care units, surgery centers and lab facilities. There is a renewed interest in non-acute care facilities that typically cost less to build, maintain and operate as compared to typical, inpatient facilities.
In 2012, Healthcare emerged as the largest job creator and most job additions were in the ambulatory care facilities and this trend is expected to continue. From the perspective of engaging more people professionally, the developing MOB market is well poised to offer permanent and temporary employment to the skilled and unskilled workforce. Beyond the scope of construction and designing, the ACA-stimulated MOB will engage people in allied activities like relocating/shifting offices and conversion of in-house spaces to allocate more room for medical care.
Small Pauses but Overall, the Curve Rises
Some opponents to ACA predict that lower Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements for healthcare facilities might curtail the real estate growth suggested above. But counter to that point is that the large influx of new insured members will increase the need for inpatient and outpatient spaces. Therefore, medical office property market in the ownership and tenancy format are expected to gain.
Yes, statistics do suggest that MOB growth was slower during the last quarter of 2012 but this is being interpreted as a mere blip in a predominantly-upward curve. Medical realty developers are being increasingly expected to refurbish and create more room within the existing infrastructure through a smarter approach. This is where medical real estate strategists will also be required, i.e. for repurposing existing medical spaces. Other trends expected to prevail is the greater demand for freestanding emergency unit