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Special Focus: Trends to track in 2006

MOST INDUSTRY SHIFTS ARE BEING DRIVEN BY MONEY

By Jessica Griffith

Factors from obesity rates to Hurricane Katrina will affect healthcare real estate in 2006, but all of the trends can be summarized in a single word: money.

Old buildings are obsolete. New ones are expensive. And costs for both construction and capital improvements continue to rise as healthcare organizations struggle to update and modernize their facilities.

The healthcare construction market is expected to total between $15 billion and $25 billion each year for the next four to five years, barring radical changes to the economy or federal reimbursement, says Les Leider, principal with consulting firm LarsonAllen Health Care Group in Minneapolis.

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