Ameris Health Systems, Nashville, said it has closed on 15-year leases for two hospitals owned by Mississippi County, Ark., and taken over operation of the facilities from Baptist Memorial Health Care Corp., Memphis, Tenn. Terms were not disclosed. The hospitals are Baptist Memorial Hospital-Blytheville (Ark.), which will be renamed Great River Medical Center, and Baptist Memorial Hospital-Osceola (Ark.), which will be renamed South Mississippi County Regional Hospital. The hospitals were staffed for about 35 beds and 15 beds, respectively, said David Hogan, Baptist's executive vice president and chief operating officer. Hogan said Baptist wanted to consolidate the two hospitals but agreed to give up the leases if the county found an operator willing to keep both hospitals open. County officials could not be reached at deadline. Privately held Ameris now owns or operates three hospitals and manages two. -- by Michael Romano and Vince Galloro
Ameris takes over leases of Ark. county hospitals
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