CHS Divests Four Rural Hospitals



On Sept. 29, Community Health Systems, Inc. (NYSE:CYH) announced subsidiaries of the company have signed a definitive agreement for the sale of four rural hospitals - three in Mississippi and one in Florida - and their associated assets to subsidiaries of East Tennessee-based Curae Health, Inc.

Facilities included in the transaction are 95-bed Merit Health Gilmore Memorial in Amory, Miss., 112-bed Merit Health Batesville in Batesville, Miss., 181-bed Merit Health Northwest Mississippi in Clarksdale, Miss. and 126-bed Highlands Regional Medical Center in Sebring, Fla.

The company has previously announced plans to reduce and refine its overall portfolio with proceeds being used to pay down debt.

"We are highly invested in the success of our affiliated hospitals, and we are considering how to best position them for the future," said Wayne T. Smith, chairman and chief executive officer of Community Health Systems, Inc. "These four hospitals provide quality care and are important in each of their communities. They will benefit from alignment with a smaller organization specializing in the operation of rural hospitals. Divestiture of these assets advances our strategy to focus on a portfolio of larger hospitals and regional healthcare systems."

The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year, subject to customary regulatory approvals and closing conditions, as well as a financing contingency.