Ascension is assuming full ownership of four hospitals in mid-Tennessee that were previously managed in partnership with Capella Healthcare.
Privately held Capella, based in Franklin, Tenn., entered into the joint venture with Ascension's St. Thomas Health division in 2012. The hospitals included under the deal were River Park Hospital in McMinnville, Highlands Medical Center in Sparta, Dekalb Community Hospital in Smithville and Stones River Hospital in Woodbury. All four hospitals were previously owned by Capella prior to the agreement.
The deal terms called for a $1 million renovation of Highlands, as well as investments in developing cardiac-care centers at three of the hospitals. Capella remained the majority partner, with Nashville-based St. Thomas holding an equity interest.
Ascension did not disclose financial terms or a timeline for buying out Capella's stake.
The move comes as St. Thomas undertakes a new partnership with the Memphis-based University of Tennessee College of Medicine to launch a family medicine residency program in the greater Nashville area. The program received accreditation to begin training new physicians this year, and the two partners are expanding and building space for the program.
Ascension also said Friday that it has promoted two of its Nashville-based executives.
Dr. Mike Schatzlein, currently St. Thomas Health's CEO, will become senior vice president and group ministry operating executive. Karen Springer, St. Thomas' current chief operating officer, will assume the CEO role and also become senior vice president and Tennessee Ministry market executive.
Capella has been divesting hospitals in Tennessee and Missouri since last year as the business environment in the Southeast becomes more challenging. It sold Grandview Medical Center in Jasper, Tenn., to HCA in February 2014, and Mineral Area Regional Medical Center in Farmington, Mo., to BJC Healthcare in May of this year.
But it also is adding facilities in the Pacific Northwest, where it plans to acquire Lourdes Health Network in Pasco, Wash., and St. Joseph Regional Medical Center in Lewiston, Idaho, from Ascension.