GOP leaders blasted the Obama administration on wellness benefits; DaVita Healthcare Partners to see $3.8B new debt;

> Under the merger deal between Healthcare Partners and DaVita, the new company DaVita Healthcare Partners will have $3.8 billion in new debt, reported NBC Los Angeles. This deal is the latest in a growing trend of healthcare consolidation. Although success of the merger is uncertain, Kent Thiry, CEO of Total Renal Care is optimistic that the consolidation ultimately will benefit both patients and financial investors. Some health advocates have expressed concerned that patient care will not be a priority in a financially based deal. Article

> Christus Santa Rosa Health System will permanently close Christus Santa Rosa Hospital-City Centre by Aug. 13, eliminating 400 positions in the process, the San Antonio Business Journal noted. The Texas Workforce Commission intends to transform the existing facility into a $135 million children's hospital, although it is unclear as to how many job opportunities the new facility will create. Article

> Jewish Hospital & St. Mary's HealthCare in Louisville, Ky., announced CEO David Laird retired from the organization, according to Business First. Laird's departure follows the merger that created KentuckyOne Health, the state's largest healthcare system, a move in which Laird played a vital role. Article

> GOP leaders blasted the Obama administration for its $20 million public relations contract to promote wellness benefits from the health reform law, reported Roll Call. Ohio Sen. Rob Portman requested further information on the public relations contract. "I am seeking HHS's legal opinion concerning whether this public relations contract complies with the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2012, which bars certain public relations spending," he stated in a letter. Article

> Research has found that 1-in-12 U.K. babies and toddlers contract a potentially life-threatening infection in the hospital, according to UPI. Article

And Finally… Steer clear of the dirtiest places in the office. Article