LOS ALTOS, Calif.—
Ascension Health Alliance, St. Louis, and Daughters of Charity Health System, Los Altos, have signed a memorandum of understanding for Daughters of Charity to become part of Ascension Health, the alliance’s hospital division. Terms of the memorandum were undisclosed by the two Catholic organizations, and there is no specific schedule for reaching a definitive agreement, according to a news release. Completion of the process is expected to come by year-end, the release states. Sixhospital Daughters of Charity shares roots with 76-hospital Ascension Health in that four of Ascension’s five original Catholic sponsors when it formed in 1999 were affiliated with the Daughters of Charity, according to the release. But Daughters of Charity’s sponsor—the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul, Province of the West—was not among them. “Daughters of Charity Health System shares Ascension Health’s commitment to serve all with special attention to those who are poor and vulnerable,” Anthony Tersigni, president and CEO of Ascension Health Alliance, said in the release. “Both organizations are committed to providing quality, compassionate care to the whole person—body, mind and spirit.” The alliance last week also announced it had formed a group purchasing organization. And its private equity arm, Ascension Health Care Network, entered into exclusive negotiations to acquire 427-bed St. Clare’s Health System, Denville, N.J. DENVER—
The Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Health System, in a move that continues the trend of healthcare consolidation in Colorado, is transferring its headquarters and some 750 jobs from Lenexa, Kan., to the Denver area. The system plans to base 200 positions in Denver and as many as 550 in the suburb of Broomfield. When the system named Michael Slubowski president and CEO in October 2010, it was noted that he would be based in Denver and that one of his duties would be to manage the integration with two-hospital Exempla Healthcare, Denver, a move made possible after a long legal battle. Exempla also manages another facility, 376-bed Exempla St. Joseph Hospital in Denver, and Exempla still operates under a joint agreement between the Sisters of Charity system and the Community First Foundation, a Denverbased philanthropic organization. According to a news release, the Sisters of Charity system generates about 52% of its total $2.7 billion in revenue from four Colorado hospitals. The system said in the announcement that the move to the Denver area will help it efficiently provide support services to its hospitals in California, Colorado, Kansas and Montana. BELLEVUE, Wash.—
Peacehealth has joined an effort led by the not-for-profit P4 Medicine Institute, Seattle, to use genomics and molecular diagnostics to try to predict diseases among individuals and improve population health and wellness. Eight-hospital Peacehealth is the first community health system to sign on as a P4 Medicine Institute partner, according to a news release. P4MI, as it is known—the “P4” stands for medicine that is predictive, preventive, personalized and participatory— was founded in 2010 by the Seattle-based Institute for Systems Biology and Ohio State University. P4MI aims to speed biomedical innovation and support moreeffective, lower-cost healthcare by helping to prevent disease, personalize treatments and engage consumers in their care, according to the release. “Over time, we hope to take rapidly emerging (P4 Medicine Institute) health and wellness innovations and integrate them into everyday interactions between Peacehealth providers and their patients to better predict, prevent and treat disease,” Peter Adler, Peacehealth’s senior vice president for strategy, innovation and development, said in the release. PHOENIX—
The Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association announced its intention to drop a lawsuit against the state’s Medicaid system. The federal lawsuit was filed in November 2011 against the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System and aimed to block a 5% cut in Medicaid reimbursement. State officials claim the reduction will save them $95 million annually. Last week, a federal judge denied a preliminary injunction to suspend the cut. “This is a challenging time for hospitals and patients as a result of a prolonged recession and budget cuts to healthcare programs,” association President and CEO Laurie Liles said in a news release. “As we look ahead, we know the state and Arizona hospitals will continue to face economic challenges and we look forward to working with state leaders like Senate President Steve Pierce to prepare for the future and grow our state’s economy.” Arizona hospitals, like those in much of the rest of the nation, are seeing an increase in uninsured patients in emergency rooms, and the association says the amount of charity care that Arizona hospitals provided in the last quarter of 2011 spiked by 75% compared with the same time in 2010. Pierce, a Republican, said in the same association news release that he was pleased with the decision to drop the lawsuit: “We need to stop looking back and instead look ahead to find solutions to the crisis in healthcare,” he added.
Seton Medical Center in Daly City, Calf., is the largest hospital of Daughters of Charity, which signed a memorandum of understanding to join Ascension Health.