Steward could get green light to move into Rhode Island

Massachusetts-based Steward Health Care System could soon move into Rhode Island, reported The Providence Journal. The State of Rhode Island General Assembly on Monday announced that the House and Senate approved legislation that lifts a ban to restrict for-profit companies from buying more than one hospital in a three-year period. The bill that revises the Hospital Conversions Act now makes its way to the governor's desk.

Steward Health Care, which already includes many hospitals in Eastern Massachusetts in its network, hopes to branch out into Rhode Island, starting with the addition of Landmark Medical Center in Woonsocket. Healthcare advocates are concerned that as a result of this bill, the public welfare will not be a chief interest in decisions regarding hospital mergers. Article