The proposed partnership between Emory Healthcare and DeKalb Medical is expected to close in the next 100 days, the systems announced Tuesday.
The Federal Trade Commission recently approved the deal, which kicked off with a letter of intent in November. If Georgia's attorney general signs off, the struggling not-for-profit DeKalb system would operate under Emory.
"Our intent when we began exploring partnerships was to become part of a strong and innovative health system that would ensure our ability to serve our community far into the future," Robert Wilson, president and CEO and vice chairman of the board of DeKalb Medical, said in a statement, adding that Emory fits the bill.
Decatur, Ga.-based DeKalb Medical includes three hospitals in DeKalb County and 50 physician offices. It has a medical staff of more than 800 physicians in 55 specialties.
Emory is an integrated academic healthcare system and the clinical arm of Emory University's Robert W. Woodruff Health Sciences Center. It has seven hospitals and nearly 60 urgent-care clinics in metro Atlanta and 220 primary-care clinics statewide. Emory also has 23 regional affiliate hospitals.
DeKalb Medical ended its fiscal 2017 with an operating loss of $22 million, compared with $20.3 million the year before, according to Modern Healthcare's financial database. It had $191 million in long-term debt as of June and has since laid off staff amid senior management turnover.