RIDOH Issues Approval with Conditions of Initial Application for Sale of Hospitals

Second required decision still pending from RIDOH

 

The Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) is announcing today its approval with conditions of a Hospital Conversion Act (HCA) application for the sale of Roger Williams Medical Center and Our Lady of Fatima Hospital. The decision contains several stringent conditions intended to ensure the financial viability of the hospitals, stable operational structures at the facilities, and a continued commitment to health equity and the needs of all patients in the hospitals’ communities.

 

The hospitals are currently owned by Prospect Medical Holdings and are operated by CharterCARE Health Partners. These hospitals provide essential services to vulnerable populations in the state and are served by staffs of dedicated and committed healthcare workers. The prospective buyer, the Centurion Foundation, is a Georgia-based non-profit company.

 

“Rhode Island needs a stable network of hospitals that supports the health and wellness of every community in the state,” said Director of Health Jerry Larkin, MD. “In light of the historical and ongoing financial and operational challenges at the hospitals, RIDOH issued a decision today with conditions carefully developed to restore local control, help stabilize these two facilities, and help ensure that the new operators would be positioned to provide consistent, safe, high-quality care.”

 

RIDOH and the Rhode Island Attorney General review HCA applications. Attorney General Peter F. Neronha also issued an approval of the HCA application today, with a separate set of conditions.

 

Separate, additional approvals of Change in Effective Control (CEC) applications are also required of the transacting parties. All licensed healthcare facilities are subject to CEC reviews for changes that would affect 50% or more of the entity’s ownership, assets, membership interest, authority, or control. Only hospital transactions are subject to an additional HCA review. RIDOH alone issues decisions on CEC applications after the Director of Health receives recommendations on those applications from the Health Services Council. (RIDOH has not yet received complete CEC applications for the sale of Roger Williams Medical Center and Our Lady of Fatima Hospital.)

 

The conditions contained in the decision include:

 

  • Centurion is responsible for ensuring the hospitals remain in good standing with financial obligations.
  • Governing bodies for the hospitals must be maintained and include a majority of independent board members and individuals with experience in hospital operations, healthcare, finance, law, business, labor, investments, community purpose, and diversity, and they must represent the diverse populations served by the hospitals.
  • The transacting parties must hire a Chief Restructuring Officer to manage business affairs, oversee financial management, and explore strategic alternatives.
  • Prospect Medical Holdings must settle certain outstanding balances with vendors and fund necessary repairs to the hospitals.
  • The hospitals may not eliminate or significantly reduce healthcare services without approval from RIDOH.

 

RIDOH and the Attorney General hosted two public meetings in March to gather input on the HCA application. Transcripts and video recordings of those meetings are available online.

 

In reviewing HCA applications, RIDOH considers nine statutorily defined criteria:

 

  1. Satisfactory character, commitment, competence, and standing in the community;
  2. Sufficient safeguards to assure the affected community continued access to affordable care;
  3. Clear and convincing evidence to provide healthcare and access for traditionally underserved populations in the affected community;
  4. Procedures or safeguards to ensure that ownership interests will not be used as incentives for hospital employees or physicians to refer patients to the hospital;
  5. Commitment to assure the continuation of collective bargaining rights and workplace retention;
  6. Estimated future employment needs under the conversion, and retraining of employees who may be impacted by the proposed restructuring;
  7. Demonstration that public interest will be served, including access to essential medical services needed to provide safe and adequate treatment, and assurance of a balanced healthcare delivery system;
  8. Acquiror must meet the Conditions of Approval for any previous Conversion under the Act (For-Profit conversions only); and
  9. Issues of market share, especially as they affect quality, access, and affordability of services.

 

Information about the Attorney General’s Decision criteria is available here.

 

Additional Resources

 

 

 

The FBI is leading a probe into the assassination attempt on former President Trump. They identified the dead gunman as 20-year-old Thomas Mathew Crooks of Bethel Park, Pennsylvania. Agents swarmed the shooter's home overnight and found explosive materials. The FBI says he acted alone although the motive for the shooting remains unclear.       Republicans from across the country are in Milwaukee this week to officially nominate Donald Trump for the presidency. Security has been dramatically heightened following the assassination attempt on Trump during a campaign rally Saturday in Pennsylvania. Party delegates will select their presidential and vice presidential nominees and adopt a party platform during the Republican National Convention.       Leaders from around the world are condemning the assassination attempt of former President Trump at a rally in Pennsylvania. Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky said such violence has no justification in the world. India's Prime Minister Narenda Modi said he condemns the attempt and wished Trump a speedy recovery. French President Emmanuel Macron said the shooting was a tragedy "for our democracies."        Police in Birmingham, Alabama are searching for suspects in connection with two separate shootings over the weekend that resulted in the deaths of seven people. Ten other victims were also wounded. Both shootings occurred Saturday night, one at a private birthday party inside a night club, the other a drive-by shooting. Investigators are describing both as targeted incidents.       Lots of Houston-area residents are still sweltering in the dark after Hurricane Beryl slammed Texas last week. As of last check, over 290-thousand customers were without electricity. CenterPoint Energy has restored power to around one-point-nine-million people since the storm hit, or about 85-percent of those affected by outages.       Actress Shannen Doherty, best known for her roles in Beverly Hills 90210 and Charmed, has died after a battle with cancer at the age of 53. Her publicist says Doherty lost her battle with cancer on Saturday after many years of fighting the disease.