After two failed attempts to sell its whole system, Samaritan Health System in Phoenix said Friday that it has signed letters of intent to sell two of its eight hospitals to for-profit companies, one of them a previously spurned suitor.
Samaritan is divesting 213-bed Maryvale Samaritan Medical Center in Phoenix to Vanguard Health Systems, whose buyout offer for the entire Samaritan system was turned down last November (Nov. 10, 1997, p. 22).
Vanguard, formed last July by onetime OrNda HealthCorp top executive Charles Martin Jr., intends to convert Maryvale into a for-profit facility, becoming the Nashville-based company's first hospital.
Samaritan also is selling 118-bed Havasu Samaritan Regional Hospital in Lake Havasu City, Ariz., to Brentwood, Tenn.-based Province Healthcare, a privately held for-profit company that owns or leases eight hospitals and manages 50 other hospitals in 22 states, including three in Arizona. It also intends to convert Havasu into a for-profit.
Province was formed in February 1996 when Nashville's Principal Hospital Co. acquired Portland, Ore.-based Brim's healthcare group. Province is headed by Martin Rash, who was Principal's president and chief executive officer. Province is preparing to go public (Nov. 24, 1997, p. 14).
Samaritan didn't disclose the terms of either proposed sale. The deals are expected to close in June.
Samaritan previously had proposed mergers with Phoenix-based HealthPartners of Southern Arizona and San Francisco-based Catholic Healthcare West, but both deals fell through. It said last fall that it was developing plans for a sale, partial sale or joint venture involving Maryvale and Havasu. Samaritan's flagship hospital is 714-bed Good Smaritan Regional Medical Center in Phoenix.