Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Essent Drops One....

SSM Health Care Finalizes Purchase of Crossroads Regional Medical Center, Renames Facility SSM St. Joseph Health Center-Wentzville

SSM Health Care-St. Louis announced today that it has finalized the purchase of Crossroads Regional Medical Center (CRMC) in Wentzville and renamed the facility SSM St. Joseph Health Center-Wentzville.

Beginning today, SSM St. Joseph Health Center-Wentzville will offer patients in Wentzville and surrounding communities a 24-hour emergency department, as well as convenient access to outpatient programs, including diagnostic services such as radiology (MRI, CT and mammography), laboratory, cardiology and pulmonary services. Following some minor facility modifications slated for completion by December, the hospital also will offer inpatient and outpatient behavioral health services.

“Our primary goal has always been to deliver services that meet the community’s most critical needs, particularly emergency room and outpatient services. Today, we begin that journey,” said Ronald J. Levy, president and chief executive officer of SSM Health Care-St. Louis. “SSM St. Joseph Health Center-Wentzville will provide quick, convenient access to a variety of health care services while maintaining flexibility for future growth.”

Paul Convery, M.D., interim president of SSM St. Joseph Health Center, St. Charles, will oversee St. Joseph Health Center-Wentzville until Nov. 28. At that time, Sherlyn Hailstone will become president of St. Joseph Health Center, St. Charles; St. Joseph Health Center-Wentzville; and St. Joseph Medical Park. Hailstone, currently executive vice president/chief executive officer of Saint Francis Hospital, a 405-bed community teaching hospital in Evanston, Ill. was named president of St. Joseph Health Center, St. Charles, in October.

SSMHC-St. Louis announced in September that it had reached an agreement in principle with Essent Healthcare to purchase CRMC. The hospital, known as Doctor’s Hospital before being acquired by Essent in 2000, faced intense market pressures that threatened its future. Most notably, CRMC was located in a community with a relatively young population, which made it difficult to sustain a full-service hospital. Essent said in August that it was faced with two options for CRMC: Close the hospital, or find a new partner. SSMHC-St. Louis obtained in October the necessary zoning and regulatory approvals to finalize the purchase.

With 7 hospitals, nearly 2,000 staff physicians and 8,600 employees, SSM Health Care-St. Louis is committed to serving the comprehensive health needs of St. Louis area residents. Sponsored by the Franciscan Sisters of Mary, the health care network includes SSM Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital, SSM DePaul Health Center, SSM St. Joseph Health Center, St. Charles, SSM St. Joseph Health Center-Wentzville, SSM St. Joseph Hospital West, SSM St. Joseph Hospital of Kirkwood, SSM St. Mary's Health Center and SSM Rehab, plus three medical groups: SSM St. Charles Clinic Medical Group, SSM Medical Group and SSM DePaul Medical Group. Its parent organization, SSM Health Care System, also based in St. Louis, in 2002 became the first health care recipient of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. The system owns, operates and manages hospitals and nursing homes in four states: Missouri, Illinois, Wisconsin and Oklahoma.

Well folks, in other related news, it was disclosed that they lost money in all but one year of ownership of Crossroads.

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