Health Care

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Steward Health Care Completes Purchase of 4 Area Hospitals

May 2, 2017
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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Representatives of Steward Health Care System today will tour three local hospitals that the Boston-based medical group officially acquired Monday.

Steward Health Care System and Community Health Systems Inc., based in Franklin, Tenn., announced after close of markets that Steward had completed its purchase of eight CHS hospitals. They include Northside Medical Center in Youngstown, Trumbull Memorial Hospital in Warren, Hillside Rehabilitation Hospital in Howland and Sharon Regional Health System in Sharon, Pa.

In February, CHS announced plans to sell its hospitals in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida to Steward. The three Ohio hospitals operated as units of CHS subsidiary ValleyCare Health System of Ohio.

The acquisition increases Steward’s footprint to 18 hospitals nationally, with 23,000 employees, and more than 3,000 physicians, the company said. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“As we expand our integrated, community-based health care model to new regions, we look forward to ensuring the highest level of care for our new patients,” said Dr. Mark Girard, president of Steward Health Care Network, in a statement. “We are proud to welcome the patients, employees, and physicians in these communities to the Steward family.”

Pam Shelton, president of Local 2288 of the American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees, and Tom Connelly, president of AFSCME Local 2022, said they are encouraged by what has taken place so far.

Shelton, whose bargaining unit represents licensed practical nurses and maintenance workers at Hillside, said a “welcoming team” from Steward met with employees at the hospital Monday.

Morale at the hospital is good and employees are “very optimistic and looking forward to this transition,” she said. Steward representatives “truly wanted our input. It felt good today. It’s been a long time since I have seen and felt this in the building,” she remarked.

Today Shelton will accompany Steward’s director of strategic planning and labor relations in a tour of Hillside. Representatives also will meet with AFSCME presidents at Trumbull Memorial, she said.

“The transition has been good,” said Connelly, who represents registered nurses at Trumbull Memorial. Steward officials “seem to be engaging the unions for collaborative discussion,” something he said CHS did not do.

Both union presidents said existing labor contracts are being accepted by Steward without any changes in the terms.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.