NC hospital system tries another megamerger

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Atrium Health struck out a year ago when it attempted to merge with in-state rival UNC Health Care, Bob reports. Now, the hospital system has inked a new deal to combine with Wake Forest Baptist Health, which is 90 minutes away from its headquarters.

Why it matters: Research overwhelmingly shows these kinds of regional hospital mergers lead to higher health care prices (and, consequently, premiums) because providers gain negotiating leverage and make it harder for health insurers to exclude them from networks.

Between the lines: The primary hook that Atrium and Wake Forest are selling is that they would build a new medical school in Charlotte. Because who could be against more doctors and research?

  • The organizations didn’t mention how, or if, they would try to keep costs and prices down.
  • The combined system would have almost $10 billion of revenue, which is roughly the size of Boston Scientific.


Geisinger to buy medical school, insiders say deal will close by 2017

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Danville, Pa.-based Geisinger Health System has plans to purchase Scranton, Pa.-based The Commonwealth Medical College, reports The Citizens’ Voice.

The new medical school will be dubbed the Geisinger Commonwealth College of Medicine.

Geisinger President and CEO David Feinberg, MD, and TCMC President and Dean Steven Scheinman, MD, will officially announce the deal during a conference at the medical school Sept. 28.

Though Geisinger’s board and TCMC’s board have approved the acquisition, it still awaits regulatory approval. The deal is expected to be complete by Jan. 1, 2017.

TCMC, which currently has 480 students, opened its doors in 2009. By 2011, the Liaison Committee on Medical Education put it on probation due to financial struggles. Though TCMC considered affiliating with the University of Scranton (Pa.), talks dissolved in 2012. The LCME lifted its probation a few months later.