Planning and zoning commissioners on Tuesday approved site plans for a long-rumored third hospital in Casper.

Plans for the hospital, which will be privately owned by Kansas-based healthcare facility management firm Nueterra, will now go before Casper City Council for further review.

Casper mayor Kenyne Schlager says she’s concerned about the process. She hopes the parties involved, including Wyoming Medical Center, the Natrona County Board of County Comissioners and Nueterra, consider the well-being of Casper residents.

“I can understand where the county commissioners are coming from as well as Wyoming Medical Center – they have a vested interest in the facility and its operations,” Schlager says. “The focus should be on healthcare for our citizens and anything that happens that will improve the healthcare for our citizens."

Commissioners and Wyoming Medial Center have both expressed concern that a third hospital would severely divide the healthcare market in Casper, which may cause Wyoming Medical Center to lose its Level II trauma center. Wyoming Medical Center rents its facility from the county.

Councilors will review the plans at a later date.