The boards of two hospitals in the Toledo, Ohio, area have approved a merger to cut costs and attract new patients.
Flower and Toledo hospitals agreed in principle to the merger four months ago (March 27, p. 15). The boards approved the deal last week.
The deal is the first merger of two separately owned Toledo-area hospitals in recent history.
It is subject to approval by the Federal Trade Commission and U.S. Justice Department, said Dan Rissing, president and chief executive of Toledo Hospital and ProMedica Health Systems, its parent company.
He said the merger is expected to save $195 million over the next 10 years as the hospitals consolidate some clinical services and administrative departments.
It was unclear whether any jobs would be eliminated.
"I can't say we're not going to have layoffs; I'm not saying we are," Rissing said. "It will be at least six months before we hear from the regulatory agencies. For the first year or two after that, we are not looking to do anything in the way of layoffs."
Toledo Hospital has about 4,700 employees. Flower, in suburban Sylvania, has 1,800 employees, including workers at Lake Park long-term-care facility and the Goerlich Center for Alzheimer's Care, Flower spokeswoman Colleen Grubb said.
Flower will merge into the Toledo hospital system. Flower's doctors will receive access to thousands of enrollees in health plans offered by Paramount Health Care, a ProMedica subsidiary.