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Regional News/South

By Modern Healthcare
Posted: July 20, 2013 - 12:01 am ET

INVERNESS, Fla.—The Citrus County Hospital Board narrowed the bidding for its struggling Citrus Memorial Health System to three for-profit suitors. The board received five proposals from four bidders looking to take over the hospital, which is saddled with $80 million in debt and $30 million in underfunded pension liabilities. Initially, four bidders were vying for the 198-bed hospital: HCA, Nashville; RegionalCare Hospital Partners, Brentwood, Tenn.; Tampa (Fla.) General Hospital; and Health Management Associates, Naples, Fla., which submitted two proposals. The board eliminated Tampa General from the running. HMA's takeover bid, valued at $293 million, is the highest. It includes a purchase price of $120 million and a capital investment of $50 million. HMA also proposed structuring the deal as a joint venture, in a transaction that would be valued at $238 million. Both investor-owned chains have at least one hospital within 22 miles of Citrus Memorial, and the board's M&A consultant Josh Nemzoff noted in his presentation that antitrust concerns might be a consideration. For RegionalCare, its proposed $252 million deal would mark its first foray into Florida.

—Beth Kutscher

KYLE, Texas—Seton Healthcare Family broke ground this month on an inpatient rehabilitation hospital in Kyle that the Austin-based Ascension Health division will operate in a joint venture with Post Acute Medical. The 54,500-square foot, 40-bed facility—known as Warm Springs Rehabilitation Hospital—will be located across from the Seton Medical Center Hays campus, and will specialize in rehabilitation for stroke, brain injury, spinal cord injury, amputation, major trauma, movement disorders and orthopedic conditions. Post Acute Medical, a privately held company with headquarters in Camp Hill, Pa., will be the majority owner of the hospital. Construction of the $16 million project is scheduled to be complete next June. “Healthcare will change dramatically in the years ahead, with Seton working with patients so they recuperate in a lower-cost rehabilitation hospital or at home instead of in more-costly acute hospital beds,” Seton Ventures and Alliances President and CEO Tom Gallagher said in a news release. “Our partnership with Post Acute Medical is a significant step in Hays County toward reducing healthcare costs.”

—Rachel Landen

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