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Demand for Medical Office Space High and Increasing

Vacancy rate for medical office buildings 9.5 percent in third quarter of 2015; lowest since 2007

FRIDAY, Jan. 29, 2016 (HealthDay News) — Demand for medical office space for ambulatory care is at a high point and looks likely to continue increasing, according to an article published in Forbes.

An already low vacancy rate of below 10 percent in medical office buildings and space for ambulatory care is likely to continue through 2016 and beyond. In the third quarter of 2015 the vacancy rate was 9.5 percent for medical office buildings, which was the lowest rate since 2007 (9.1 percent), and 3.2 percent below that of all office space nationally.

Millions of newly insured Americans are now able to seek medical treatment in a doctor’s office, urgent care center, retail clinic, or other outpatient site, instead of going to the hospital emergency room. As health insurance companies pay for value and shift reimbursement from fee-for service medicine, insurance payment is pushing more patients to ambulatory care settings. Interest in walk-in space is increasing, and more urgent care centers and physician practices are being opened.

“We fully expect vacancy rates to continue their downward trend,” Mike Roessle, director of national office research at Colliers International, a real estate services firm, said in the Forbes article. “With the increased spending in health care and an aging population, it’s going to continue. Demand will be very robust for years to come.”

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