The board of Elkhart (Ind.) General Hospital has approved an affiliation with Memorial Hospital in South Bend, Ind. Memorial's board still has to vote on the proposed affiliation. If it passes, the organizations will sign the final binding agreement and form a new parent organization. Each hospital will retain its own board of directors and continue to develop their own strategies to serve their respective communities.
2. Sisters of Mercy to Lease Missouri's McCune-Brooks Hospital
Carthage (Mo.) City Council approved an agreement for Chesterfield, Mo.-based Sisters of Mercy Health System to lease its city-owned McCune-Brooks Hospital. Under the arrangement, Mercy will provide approximately $3 million each year to help pay off the $40 million in debt still remaining from McCune-Brooks' construction. Mercy will also spend $20-30 million on the installation of a new EMR system in McCune-Brooks along with an additional $250,000 in payments each year for unspecified purposes.
3. Community Health Systems Out of the Running for Colorado's Memorial Health
Brentwood, Tenn.-based Community Health Systems has dropped out of the bidding process to lease Memorial Health System, based in Colorado Springs, Colo. HCA-HealthOne is now the only for-profit company bidding for Memorial. The other four systems interesting in leasing Memorial are: Englewood, Colo.-based Centura Health, Denver-based Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Health System, University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora and an internal bid from Memorial.
4. Steward Wants to Sell Off 11 Medical Offices on Hospital Campuses
Boston-based Steward Health Care System is offering to sell 11 medical office buildings on the campuses of its Massachusetts hospitals. For-profit Steward plans to sell the buildings, lease the real estate back and use the funds for hospital operations. Steward would then sign long-term contracts to rent the office space. The sales are expected to return tens of millions in cash, according to reports.
5. OSF Healthcare, Rockford Health Plan to Appeal FTC's Challenge Against Acquisition
Peoria, Ill.-based OSF Healthcare and Rockford (Ill.) Health executives plan to contest the FTC's decision that an acquisition between the systems will reduce competition in the Rockford area. OSF announced plans to acquire Rockford Health last year to create a new entity called OSF Northern Region. The systems' plans to challenge the FTC's ruling may take up to two years or more, according to reports. A federal hearing is scheduled for April 17.
6. Winter Haven Hospital in Florida Seeks Partner
Winter Haven Hospital in Florida has sent requests for proposals of affiliation to five non-profit health systems. Those five Florida systems are Winter Park-based Adventist Health System, Clearwater-based BayCare Health System, Mayo Clinic Jacksonville, Orlando Health and Shands HealthCare in Gainesville.
7. Cascade Valley Hospital in Washington Explores Partnership
Cascade Valley Hospital in Arlington, Wash., is exploring a possible partnership with Skagit Valley Hospital in Mount Vernon, Wash., and Island Hospital in Anacortes, Wash. Cascade Valley plans to remain independent, but will work with the two hospitals to provide clinical services.
8. Richmond University Med Center to Affiliate With Mount Sinai
Richmond University Medical Center in Staten Island, N.Y., is nearing a clinical affiliation agreement with Mount Sinai Medical Center, based in Queens. The deal is expected to be complete by early 2012, pending regulatory approval. Under the affiliation, the two hospitals will partner to offer certain clinical services, but the two will keep finances and operations separate.
9. Baptist Healthcare of Louisville Could Acquire Trover Health System
Louisville, Ky.-based Baptist Healthcare has entered into exclusive negotiations to acquire the assets of Madisonville, Ky.-based Trover Health System. Baptist beat out LifePoint Hospitals and Owensboro (Ky.) Medical System to move forward with merger plans. An agreement is expected to be finalized in spring.
10. New Jersey's Mountainside Hospital May be Looking for Buyer
Hackensack (N.J.) University Medical Center was asked to "review the acquisition" of Mountainside Hospital in Montclair, N.J., but has decided not to partake in the opportunity. The 365-bed Mountainside is currently owned by Merit Health Systems, based in Louisville, Ky. It is unknown whether Merit has asked any other medical centers or health systems about buying Mountainside.
11. Swedish Medical Center in Seattle Strikes Affiliation With Jefferson Healthcare Hospital
The commissioners of Jefferson Healthcare Hospital in Port Townsend, Wash., have unanimously approved an affiliation with Swedish Medical Center in Seattle. The deal will go into effect Dec. 1. JHH CEO Mike Glenn has previously noted the affiliation would cost the hospital $75,000 per year.
12. Florida's Health Central Inks Agreement to Sell to Orlando Health
Ocoee, Fla.-based Health Central is making progress in its sale to Orlando Health, as executives from both systems completed a $177 million asset purchase agreement. Health Central has made the document accessible to the public on its website. Orlando Health's board of directors has already approved the agreement and Health Central's board is expected to approve it Nov. 29.
13. Indiana's Parkview Health Acquires LTAC Hospital
Fort Wayne, Ind.-based Parkview Health has signed a letter of intent to acquire long-term acute-care Vibra Hospital of Fort Wayne. As part of the agreement, Parkview Would relocate the LTAC facility into Parkview Hospital, the system's flagship facility.
14. Colorado Attorney General Sued Over Sale of Health Foundation to HCA/HealthOne
A group of former board members that oversaw the Colorado Health Foundation have sued Colorado Attorney General John Suthers after he approved a sale to transfer 40 percent ownership to the foundation's for-profit partner, HCA/HealthOne. Opponents to the deal claim Mr. Suthers should have ruled against the deal because it violated a hospital-transfer law. They claim Mr. Suthers should have either altered the transaction radically or thrown out the sale completely, and they claim foundation "fundamentally altered its binding mission when it sold its 40 percent business ownership," according to reports.
15. Prime Healthcare Pursues Ownership of Hawaii Medical Center
Ontario, Calif.-based Prime Healthcare Services is now the lender for bankrupt Hawaii Medical Center and may also take over the operations of the hospital. Prime has already replaced MidCap Financial as the lender in HMC's Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization. Mark Bradshaw, JD, of Irvine, Calif.-based law firm Shulman Hodges & Bastian LLP, said Prime is now working towards a sale transaction to head operations at HMC.
16. Roswell Regional in New Mexico to Come Under CHS Umbrella
Franklin, Tenn.-based Community Health Systems has announced that one of its subsidiaries has formed a definitive agreement to acquire Roswell (N.M.) Regional Hospital. The deal is expected to close during the first quarter of 2012. If it is finalized, Roswell Regional will be the seventh CHS-affiliated hospital in New Mexico.
17. Landmark, Steward Merger Application Deemed Incomplete by Rhode Island Officials
The Rhode Island Department of Health has reportedly deemed Landmark Medical Center's application to merge with Boston-based Steward Health Care incomplete. A spokesperson from the DOH was unable to discuss what was missing from the application, according to the report, but was able to confirm that Landmark and Steward have until Dec. 27 to repair it. The DOH will then have 10 days to determine if that second version is complete.
Discussions of a possible merger between Tulane University Medical Center and Ochsner Health System, both in New Orleans, have been put on hold. It is unclear at this point whether merger talks among the parties would be resurrected.
19. Palm Drive Hospital Negotiates Partnership with California's Marin General
Palm Drive Hospital in Sebastopol, Calif., has made its selection out of numerous intereted health systems, and is beginning exclusive negotiations with Marin General Hospital in Greenbrae, Calif., to form an affiliation. As proposed, the affiliation would provide management services, management support and access to Prima Medical Group physicians. As proposed, the affiliation would provide management services, management support and access to Prima Medical Group physicians.
20. Highmark to Pay $300M in Loans to Acquire West Penn Allegheny in Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh-based Highmark will pay $475 million in full to acquire West Penn Allegheny Health System, also in Pittsburgh. Of the total, $300 million will be in the form of loans, $100 million in cash and $75 million for scholarships for medical students at a new medical school being established by West Penn and Temple University in Philadelphia.
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