HCA deal challenged by former foundation chair

The former head of the Colorado Health Foundation (CHF) is challenging its proposed sale of seven Denver-area hospitals to for-profit hospital chain Hospital Corporation of America (HCA), claiming it could lose control of the $1.45 billion it will be paid, reports Health Policy Solutions.

Dick Anderson, who chaired the CHF between 1995 and 2000 and helped acquire the hospitals HCA is now trying to buy, believes that the current board of the organization is being lured by a "pot of gold," and that under Colorado's hospital conversion law, may be forced to spin the proceeds off into a new not-for-profit foundation.

HCA and the CHF agreed to terms of a sale last month for the foundation's 40 percent share in the hospitals. The properties include Presbyterian/St. Luke's Medical Centers, Swedish Hospital, and Sky Ridge Hospital Medical Center.

In comments submitted to the Colorado Attorney General, Anderson said HCA would use the properties as collateral to acquire other hospitals out of state, and divert funds currently used for residency training and safety net programs.

"The best result would be for the Colorado Health Foundation to reconsider their action," said Anderson, who claims at least six other former board members oppose the sale.

To learn more:
- read the Health Policy Solutions article
- read the Denver Post article