HCA, Nashville, and the University of Miami, Coral Gables, Fla., said they have signed a letter of intent to negotiate the universitys purchase of HCAs 350-bed Cedars Medical Center, Miami.
The systems hope to complete a definitive agreement and close on the transaction this summer. The universitys Miller School of Medicine already sends students and trainees on rotations at Cedars in nearly a dozen specialties, and some faculty physicians regularly practice at the hospital.
The faculty physicians also serve as the medical staff at 1,776-bed Jackson Memorial Hospital, operated by the Public Health Trust of Miami-Dade County. The trust purchased 347-bed Parkway Regional Medical Center, North Miami Beach, Fla., from Tenet Healthcare Corp. last year.
Cedars would be the third Florida hospital sold by HCA since its leveraged buyout was announced in July 2006. The $33 billion buyout was completed in November. HCA sold 279-bed Southwest Florida Regional Medical Center and 107-bed Gulf Coast Hospital, both in Fort Myers, to not-for-profit Lee Memorial Health Systems, Fort Myers.
Under the preliminary agreement with the University of Miami, HCA would provide support services, such as information technology, billing and collections and procurement services, at Cedars. Privately held HCA owns or operates about 170 hospitals in 21 states. -- by Vince Galloro