For-profit Cardiovascular Hospitals of America, Wichita, Kan., and 100 physician investors reached a tentative agreement to buy St. Francis Healthcare System's two Oahu, Hawaii, hospitals, for undisclosed terms. The physicians will invest at least $100,000 each in the joint venture with Cardiovascular Hospitals of America and hope to double the number of investors yet, said cardiologist Danelo Canete, a leader at 120-member Philippine Medical Association of Hawaii. The hospitals -- 102-bed St. Francis Medical Center-West, Ewa Beach, and 188-bed St. Francis Medical Center-Liliha, Honolulu -- are owned by the Sisters of the Third Franciscan Order, Syracuse, N.Y. Canete said a desire to keep the hospitals Catholic was behind the effort to buy them.
Cardiovascular Hospitals of America, which has two acute-care hospitals under construction in California and Louisiana, will own 51% of the joint venture. The physicians, however, will elect four of its seven board members, Canete said. The Roman Catholic Church and Hawaii must approve the deal. Canete said physicians from his group and the Hawaii Filipino Healthcare Independent Practice Association are heavily involved. The head of Cardiovascular Hospitals of America, Badr Idbeis, also developed cardiovascular and spine specialty hospitals in Kansas. -- by Vince Galloro