Community Health Systems acquires three-hospital system

Community Health Systems (NYSE: CYH) has agreed to acquire a three-hospital system in northeast Pennsylvania from Cincinnati-based Catholic Health Partners, the health chain announced yesterday. The price of the deal was not disclosed.

The system, Mercy Health Partners, includes two general hospitals, 224-bed Mercy Hospital in Scranton and 58-bed Mercy Tyler Hospital in Tunkhannock; and one long-term acute care hospital, 68-bed Mercy Special Care Hospital in Nanticoke.

"From a company perspective, we are excited about the opportunity to grow our presence in Pennsylvania. At the successful completion of this transaction, 12 Community Health Systems affiliated hospitals will be providing health services for communities across the state," CHS Chairman, President and CEO Wayne T. Smith said in a statement.

When the deal is finalized, CHS promises to hire all employees in good standing at their same position and pay, and honor seniority, and maintain all relationships with staff physicians. CHS also promises to invest $68 million in the first five years after the transaction and donate $2 million to a community healthcare foundation, reports the Times Leader.

In addition, CHS will continue all essential services for five years and maintain religious statuary and other symbols.

The deal is subject to federal and state regulatory approvals, including review and approval by the Pennsylvania attorney general and the Vatican.

This purchase agreement follows Community Health's $7.3 billion attempt to purchase Tenet Healthcare, which issued a poison pill to fend off the takeover.

For more:
- read the CYH press release
- read the Times Leader article