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Mission Health Finalizes Sale To HCA Healthcare

The board of directors for Mission Health say a deal has been signed to sell Western North Carolina's major health system to a for-profit company, HCA Healthcare for $1.5 billion.  The deal will now be sent to the North Carolina Attorney General for final review.  According to a press release sent out Friday morning by Mission Health, the attorney general's office "willevaluateanyeffectthetransactioncouldhaveonmarketcompetition,whetherHCAHealthcareispayingafairpricefortheacquisitionandhowproceedsresultingfromthesalewillcontinuetobenefit WesternNorthCarolina."

Mission, currently a non-profit, announced earlier this year it would begin negotiations to sell to for-profit HCA Healthcare, which is based in Tennessee.  The company has hospitals and surgery centers in 20 states and the United Kingdom.  According to Mission, all of its facilities will continue to operate under the Mission name and be managed locally. 

“Fromtheverybeginning,MissionHealth’sBoardworkeddiligentlyandcontinuallytoensurethattheverybestpathwasselectedforthepeopleofwesternNorthCarolinaandtomakecertainthatourcommunityhasaccesstohighquality,effectiveandcompassionatecareforgenerationstocome,”saidMissionHealthBoardChairJohnR.Ball,MD,JD in a statement put out in a press release Friday morning.“Aftercompletingduediligenceandfinalizingdefinitiveagreementsthathavesignificantprotectionsforourruralcommunities,weareconvincedthatHCAHealthcareistherightandbestchoiceforwesternNorthCarolinaandMission’steammembers,providersandpatients.ItishearteningtosharethateverysingleMissionHealthmemberentityBoardvotedunanimouslytoapprovethistransaction.”
“MissionHealthhasanimpressive,morethan130-yeartraditionofcaringforcommunitiesthroughoutwesternNorthCarolinaandwearedelightedtohavefinalizedouragreementssothatwecanhelpcontinuetheirlegacy,”saidMiltonJohnson,HCAHealthcare’schairmanandCEO said in the same press release.
As part of the sale, Mission will create the Dogwood Health Trust, a foundation that will become one of the largest in North Carolina.  Dogwood Health would be responsible for awarding potentially billions of dollars in funds to Western North Carolina.  More details about the foundation will be unveiled September 30th.  Mission has already started naming board members for Dogwood Health, including a chair and eight board members.  Most of those already appointed hail from Buncombe County, and those moves have leaders from rural areas of Western North Carolina worried their areas will get ignored by the foundation.  Mission's largest hospital is in Asheville, but it does operate several hospitals throughout the region.  The foundations for six of those hospitals will receive up to $15-million to award to community groups once Mission's sale to HCA Healthcare is done.

Matt Bush joined Blue Ridge Public Radio as news director in August 2016. Excited at the opportunity the build up the news service for both stations as well as help launch BPR News, Matt made the jump to Western North Carolina from Washington D.C. For the 8 years prior to coming to Asheville, he worked at the NPR member station in the nation's capital as a reporter and anchor. Matt primarily covered the state of Maryland, including 6 years of covering the statehouse in Annapolis. Prior to that, he worked at WMAL in Washington and Metro Networks in Pittsburgh, the city he was born and raised in.
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