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Steward update

March 12, 2012

I’m just getting caught up on what happened in court last week when Steward Health Care System asked for changes to its purchase agreement with Landmark Medical Center. I wasn’t able to attend the hearing because I was participating in Rhode Island’s Ladies Rock Camp. I learned how to play the drums and it was awesome.

But getting back to Steward… According to Landmark’s spokesperson Bill Fischer, Judge Michael Silverstein approved all of Steward’s proposed changes. That means-

  • Steward can lay off an unlimited number of employees.
  • Steward may terminate any services at the hospital.

The company can also walk away from the sale if

  • It can’t reach a satisfactory working relationship with Thundermist Health Center.
  • It can’t reach a satisfactory working relationship with 21st Century Oncology (the company that owns a large share of  Landmark’s Cancer Center.)
  • The General Assembly doesn’t pass a law allowing companies to buy more than one hospital in a year.
  • The Attorney General’s Office and the Department of Health don’t approve the sale by May 2nd.

That last point is the only change from Steward’s original proposal. The company wanted the deadline for the sale to be April 18th, but Judge Silverstein decided that state regulators needed more time to finish the complicated hospital conversions process.

Steward maintains that although it COULD walk away from the sale if any of these things don’t happen, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it will.  Thoughts?

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Bruce Todesco permalink
    March 12, 2012 1:07 pm

    Steward’s issue with the Providence Center contract is a red herring . . . and a stinky one, at that. For over thirty years the accepted standard of care for psychiatric patients, clinically and under the RI Mental Health Law, is to provide services in the least restrictive setting appropriate to address the patient’s needs. Nothing has changed since the contract was awarded to TPC. Psych patients continue to languish in emergency rooms for lack of facility status beds. The Landmark Medical Center Behavioral Health Unit is an important (and busy) resource for the community in Northern Rhode Island. To use this as a negotiating point suggests that Steward is grasping at straws . . .

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  1. More on the Steward tax cuts « The Pulse: health care in RI

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