South Carolina's largest health system Prisma Health will acquire two hospital systems from Brentwood, Tenn.-based rural hospital operator LifePoint Health, the organizations said Thursday.
The acquisition includes Camden, S.C-based KershawHealth and Columbia, S.C.-based Providence Health, which together encompass three hospitals, a freestanding emergency department, and other facilities.
Prisma Health said the deal would help it to transform healthcare in the state by expanding centers of excellence for cardiovascular, women's health, orthopedic and pediatrics, for example.
"Providence and KershawHealth are known to share our commitment to improving patient experiences, clinical quality and access to care. We look forward to continuing our mutual goal of enhancing the health of our communities," Prisma Health CEO Mark O'Halla said in the news release Thursday announcing the acquisition.
The deal must obtain regulatory approval, but South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster has already blessed the merger, saying it "would provide new opportunities to enhance clinical quality and improve access to affordable care," according to the news release.
Prisma Health itself is the product of a 2017 merger between Greenville Health System and Palmetto Health. The system, which rebranded from Palmetto to Prisma Health in January 2019, serves 1.2 million patients annually and includes 18 hospitals with nearly 3,000 beds. It also includes 300 physician practices.
For-profit LifePoint acquired Providence Health in 2016 and Kershaw Health in 2018. Providence includes two hospitals, a freestanding ED, physician practices, and rehabilitation centers. KershawHealth includes a 119-bed medical center, along with outpatient and urgent care centers and other facilities.
LifePoint merged with private-equity owned RCCH HealthCare Partners in late 2018.