Recent hospital mergers, acquisitions come under scrutiny

Despite the surge in hospital mergers and acquisitions, the deals aren't always welcomed. The potential benefits, risks,and impact on care can raise some concerns.

Most recently, Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway is putting the proposed merger of University of Louisville (Ky.) Hospital with two private hospitals under the microscope. He intends to investigate terms of the deal to ensure consumers and taxpayers are protected, he told the Courier-Journal in an interview.

Conway also wants more information about how much influence Denver-based Catholic Health Initiatives would have on healthcare policy decisions at University Hospital.

Community members are concerned that the merger of a Catholic hospital and a non-Catholic hospital will change reproductive services for women and end-of-life care at University Hospital, according to Courier-Journal reader comments.

Meanwhile, the Colorado Health Foundation's (CHF) proposed sale of seven Denver-area hospitals to for-profit hospital chain Hospital Corporation of America (HCA) is coming under the attack. The CHF's former chair, Dick Anderson, claims CHF could lose control to HCA of its $1.45 billion profit, reports FierceHealthFinance.

As more and more hospitals look to mergers to address growing healthcare costs, they should be prepared to defend the move to those delivering and receiving the medical care.

For more:
- read the Courier-Journal article 1 and article 2
- read the FierceHealthFinance article