Eight-hospital Advocate Health Care, Oak Brook, Ill., has ended talks with Rockford (Ill.) Health System that could have yielded the addition of Advocates first hospital outside the Chicago metropolitan area.
The parties allowed a 90-day letter of intent announced in December to expire and have agreed to formulate a new one exploring clinical alignment and shared services, Rockford Health spokeswoman Evonne Woloshyn said. The system includes 286-bed Rockford Memorial Hospital, as well as Rockford Health Physicians and a joint venture rehabilitation hospital with HealthSouth Corp. Advocate spokesman Nathan Llewellyn said he could not comment on the reasoning behind the change in direction, and Woloshyn said only that the period of due diligence led leaders to conclude that the looser affiliation would better serve patients.
Rockford is about 90 miles northwest of Chicago. Advocate signed a second letter of intent in December formalizing negotiations toward an unspecified partnership with BroMenn Healthcare System, a 213-bed hospital 130 miles south of Chicago in Normal, Ill. BroMenn also owns 25-bed Eureka (Ill.) Community Hospital, BroMenn Physicians Management Corp., and the BroMenn Provider Network. Llewellyn said the next steps in the negotiations with BroMenn would be determined later this month.