WellStar Health System and Emory University have entered discussions to create a combined organization that would bring nearly a dozen hospitals under a single umbrella.
The two parties are in a 45-day public discussion period, with intentions to start putting together details of the concept over the next 12 months.
The plan calls for creating a yet-unnamed company that will include Emory's Atlanta-based hospitals and post-acute-care assets, as well as WellStar's hospitals and post-acute care assets in Atlanta's northern suburbs.
A board with equal representation from Emory and Marietta, Ga.-based WellStar will govern the new organization.
WellStar, which leases its five hospitals from local hospital authorities, will need approval to transfer those facilities to the new entity. Emory will need similar approvals, including permission from partner Trinity Health, which owns 49% of its St. Joseph's Hospital of Atlanta.
Grady Memorial Hospital and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta will continue to contract with Emory's medical school but will not be included in the new company.