BILLINGS, Mont.— Not-for-profit Billings Clinic and RegionalCare Hospital Partners, a for-profit hospital company based in Brentwood, Tenn., formed a joint venture that seeks to draw on the operational expertise and financial resources of both organizations. “We don’t think it’s complicated,” said Dr. Nicholas Wolter, CEO of 263-bed Billings Clinic. “Billings Clinic is going to remain notfor-profit.” Billings Clinic will retain its current governance structure, which he described as a medical foundation model with a 250physician medical group at its core. The newly formed entity will be known as Billings Clinic RegionalCare. Wolter compared it to the joint venture between Durham, N.C.-based Duke University Health System and the publicly traded LifePoint Hospitals system, also in Brentwood. Wolter said the new arrangement will not affect existing partnerships Billings has with nine critical-care hospitals in the region, but added that it will put his organization in a good position “to look at new opportunities” in the Northern Rocky Mountain regions of Montana and Wyoming. According to a news release, the joint venture “will provide multiple options for healthcare organizations” to become affiliated with the new entity, and it will offer potential partners support with physician integration and recruitment, plus clinical protocols and quality-improvement systems. Other offerings could include access to the capital needed for growth strategies, “including technology and facility expansion and renovation,” the release said. Wolter said there are no immediate partnerships or projects in the pipeline.
— Andis Robeznieks
SAN LEANDRO, Calif.— Sutter Health plans to donate San Leandro Hospital, its assets and equipment, plus $22 million cash to Alameda County and Alameda Health System. Sutter Health, a not-forprofit health system based in Sacramento, Calif., has been operating the hospital at a deficit for several years as part of its Eden Medical Center campus. The decision to transfer it to Oakland, Calif.-based Alameda Health System was about five years in the making, as hospital officials evaluated how to reposition it to remain what David Bradley, president of the Sutter Health East Bay Region, called an “asset in the community.” “The past few years of uncertainty have been challenging for all of us,” San Leandro Hospital President and CEO George Bischalaney
Wolter said Billings Clinic will remain not-for-profit.