Colette Stimmell, Beaumont's director of corporate communications, said board discussions are confidential. However, Stimmell said Beaumont and Henry Ford have extended their letter of intent. Last October, Beaumont and Detroit-based Henry Ford announced a merger that would create Southeast Michigan's largest not-for-profit health system, with nine hospitals and $6.4 billion in annual revenue.
The two organizations originally said they wanted to sign a definitive agreement in the first half of this year. “A merger of two prominent organizations is a big decision. So, it's not unusual for there to be different viewpoints about it,” Stimmell said in an e-mail.
Henry Ford spokesman Dwight Angell confirmed that the system's board extended the letter of intent. “We maintain our belief that bringing together two strong and highly successful health systems is the right thing to do for the community and for the future of healthcare in Michigan,” Angell said in an e-mailed statement.
Two days after the board meeting, Beaumont Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Ananias Diokno announced plans to step down from the position in June and retire in September. Dr. David Wood, president of Beaumont Physician Partners, will replace Diokno as CMO.
When the systems announced their intent to merge last October, they said their medical staffs would remain separate.
Of the 3,150 doctors on Beaumont's medical staff, about 2,500 are independent private-practice physicians.
The Henry Ford system, on the other hand, operates the Henry Ford Medical Group with 1,200 employed physicians and the Henry Ford Physician Network with 650 private practice doctors. The system also has about 2,000 independent physicians on staff at its Wyandotte, Macomb and West Bloomfield hospitals.
—Crain's Detroit Business, with Modern Healthcare staff