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Modern Healthcare - - REGIONAL NEWS -

ROSWELL, N.M. — Com­mu­nity Health Sys­tems, Franklin, Tenn., with­drew its in­ter­est in buy­ing the hos­pi­tal in Roswell that it doesn’t al­ready own af­ter re­ceiv­ing word that the in­creas­ingly vig­i­lant Fed­eral Trade Com­mis­sion planned an ex­ten­sive re­view of the trans­ac­tion. A sub­sidiary of in­vestor-owned Com­mu­nity had pro­posed buy­ing 26-bed Roswell Re­gional Hos­pi­tal for undis­closed terms dur­ing the first quar­ter of 2012 af­ter the hos­pi­tal an­nounced exclusive ne­go­ti­a­tions with the large national hos­pi­tal chain in Septem­ber. A sep­a­rate sub­sidiary of Com­mu­nity al­ready owns 162-bed East­ern New Mex­ico Med­i­cal Cen­ter, the only other acute-care hos­pi­tal in Roswell. Com­mu­nity owns, leases or op­er­ates 132 hos­pi­tals in 29 states. Com­mu­nity said the de­ci­sion to ter­mi­nate its plans to buy Roswell Re­gional came af­ter re­cently re­ceiv­ing word that the FTC planned to ex­tend its re­view of the trans­ac­tion to a time be­yond when the deal was sup­posed to close. The FTC has met the on­go­ing wave of hos­pi­tal merger ac­tiv­ity with an ag­gres­sive eye to­ward chal­leng­ing pro­posed deals that would con­cen­trate mar­ket power and lead to a like­li­hood of higher health­care prices. In 2011, the com­mis­sion filed le­gal chal­lenges against hos­pi­tal merg­ers in Rock­ford, Ill.; Maumee, Ohio; and Al­bany, Ga.

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