COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) – In an announcement made on Thursday, a Tennessee healthcare company has agreed to terms to purchase St. Francis Hospital, according to the hospital's board of trustees.
The company, LifePoint Health, is based out of Brentwood, TN.
"LifePoint shares our commitment to quality care and patient safety. Their mission, vision and values are in alignment with ours. Partnering with LifePoint will provide our hospital with the financial, operational and clinical support we need to succeed," said Richard Y. Bradley, chairman of the St. Francis Hospital Board of Trustees.
As part of the proposed partnership, LifePoint has committed to hiring all active employees, subject to pre-employment screenings. In addition, St. Francis will retain its existing charity care policies, ensuring everyone who needs care will receive it, regardless of their ability to pay.
The purchase offers many other benefits to the Columbus community, as well. When the acquisition is finalized, the hospital will become a taxpayer, providing an important source of new tax revenue to support the local economy. In addition, LifePoint will ensure a local voice in the governance of the hospital.
This comes after a tumultuous few months for the private hospital. On Nov. 14, their chief financial officer Matt Moore was fired after being suspended in late October; a week later, on Nov. 21 there were 65 positions eliminated.
Those decision came on the heels of a "budget inaccuracy" found that $30 million missing.
This agreement would then be subject to review by the Attorney General of the State of Georgia before being finalized.