An official of University of Minnesota Hospital and Clinic will head the new organization to be created by its merger with Fairview Riverside Medical Center. The two hospitals will become a separate division of Fairview Health System, the Minneapolis-based parent of Fairview Riverside. A definitive agreement is expected in late September or early October. Peter Rapp, general director of UMHC, will be senior vice president and administrator of the division. Don Bergland, who oversees a Fairview hospital in Burnsville, will be transferred to the position of senior vice president and chief operating officer of the division. Fairview also announced two other executive changes. It is creating the position of senior vice president of clinical services to be filled by Pam Tibbetts, current administrator of Fairview Riverside. Meanwhile, Mark Enger, administrator of a Fairview hospital in Edina, will take responsibility for the Burnsville hospital as well. The appointments are effective Jan. 1, the anticipated merger date.
Howard M. Chase, chief executive officer of Stormont-Vail Regional Health Center in Topeka, Kan., will leave at the end of this month to become president and CEO of Methodist Hospitals of Dallas. Chase, 58, has been at Stormont-Vail since 1980. Before that he worked at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas. Methodist has 700 beds in two hospitals and several supporting organizations. He replaces David H. Hitt, who is retiring after 12 years as Methodist's CEO.
Premier signed the first of an estimated eight to 12 corporate partnerships with suppliers for a broad range of products. But Premier disclosed very little about the five-year contract with Merck & Co. The hospital alliance vowed to be more secretive about agreements after a contract for contrast media, which is used in imaging procedures, triggered a price war (Aug. 19, p. 13). Premier did say participating hospitals would save $12 million to $20 million annually on Merck products. Further terms, including the estimated total value of the contract, weren't disclosed.
Wood Co., a food-service contract management company based in Allentown, Pa., has formed a partnership with Professional Services, a New York-based facilities management firm. Professional Services manages maintenance, housekeeping, laundry, biomedical engineering and plant operations. "Our partnership with Wood Co. enables us to provide clients with the benefits of integrated services while remaining specialized in our on-site and supporting management," said Ira Levy, president of Professional Services.
PhyCor has acquired the management company of Southwest Physician Associates, a 972-physician independent practice association in Dallas. Nashville, Tenn.-based PhyCor entered a long-term management service agreement with the IPA. Terms of the transaction weren't disclosed. Southwest Physician Associates was founded in 1983 and cares for 32,000 patients on a capitated basis.
NetCare Health Systems, based in Nashville, Tenn., has completed its acquisition of Southern Health Corp., a private long-term-care company in Atlanta. Terms of the acquisition weren't disclosed. This is the first purchase for NetCare, a private company formed in 1995 by a group of former Healthtrust executives. Southern Health controlled five hospitals with 275 beds and four nursing homes with 338 beds in Georgia and Mississippi. NetCare also has announced the signing of a definitive agreement to purchase 110-bed Denton (Texas) Community Hospital.
The Department of Veterans Affairs is leasing the Cold Springs Road Division of Indianapolis VA Medical Center to the state of Indiana for use as a psychiatric hospital. The VA will transfer all functions of the Cold Springs Road facility to Richard L. Roudebush Veterans Affairs Medical Center, its larger hospital on West 10th Street in Indianapolis. Officials estimate annual savings of $5 million in operations and maintenance costs and another $11.7 million in savings over three years because the department will not undertake planned renovations at the Cold Springs Road facility.