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|Elliot Health and Southern NH Health Explore Partnership|
|Published Wednesday, June 21, 2017|
Elliot Hospital in Manchester. Photo: Elliot Hospital
Elliot Health System (Elliot) in Manchester and Southern NH Health System (SNHH) in Nashua signed a Letter of Intent to explore combining to form a regional healthcare system. The Letter of Intent proposes the formation of a new nonprofit that would implement an integrated governance system, though Elliot and SNHH would each retain their respective names, identities and local governance structures as independently licensed organizations.
The Letter of Intent requires the parties to work together on an exclusive basis to complete due diligence and negotiate a final, binding combination agreement. Any final agreement would be subject to approval by both the Elliot and SNHH boards of trustees and by various government agencies, including the NH Department of Justice.
“By signing this Letter of Intent, we affirm our shared commitment to strengthening and expanding our charitable missions to provide the very best healthcare possible to the communities we serve, where and how it is needed most," stated Doug Dean, president and CEO of the Elliot, and Mike Rose, president and CEO of SNHH, in a joint statement. "This approach anticipates a solution to address the increasingly complex health care challenges faced by hospitals in New Hampshire and around the country. In a rapidly changing healthcare service environment, our commitment expressed in this Letter of Intent is to develop a highly-coordinated, community-based regional health care network that would enhance access to affordable care while ensuring quality of care delivered throughout southern New Hampshire.”
The Elliot and SNHH Boards of Trustees were each actively engaged in discussions that led to their approval of the Letter of Intent.
“Our boards unanimously supported and authorized the Letter of Intent because we recognize that this proposed combination could strengthen both organizations at a time when economic pressures are challenging patients and their providers,” says Tim Sullivan, chair of the SNHH board of trustees. “In southern New Hampshire, we are facing the fact that we simultaneously have a rapidly growing population of baby-boomers who require easy and affordable access to quality care and a concern that one organization alone may not be able to provide all that is necessary in the future. Our compatible missions and shared values allow us to work together to meet these and other critical needs, including mental health, while ensuring long-term organizational sustainability.”
“Although we serve separate communities, we are close enough geographically to take advantage of many synergies,” says Jim Hood, chair of the Elliot's board of directors. “The Elliot Board is very enthusiastic about this combination because it would allow us to develop programs to meet increasing community needs, share best practices to improve care, acquire, implement and optimize state-of-the-art health information technology, and secure greater access to resources needed to support the charitable and community-focused missions of both systems, all while enhancing the value of healthcare for our citizens in the years to come.”
Elliot and SNHH have created a website to provide public information, documents, plans and details on the proposed combination, including the Letter of Intent announced today. The website will continue to be updated as discussions proceed and will include schedules and information on meetings and open forums for the public to share comments and questions.
While both organizations will now focus on continuing their review of all aspects of the proposed combination and developing a Definitive Agreement, both Dean and Rose point to the public aspects of this process as essential. “Today, we are starting an important conversation with our 6,000 employees and providers, our communities, our civic and legislative leaders and the general public,” says Rose. “I’m proud of our Boards and the efforts of the leadership teams on both sides,” says Dean. “This combination would allow us to grow in the clinical setting while availing ourselves of efficiencies that would not be possible if we remained independent. The beneficiaries of our efforts will be the people who come to us for care, and I could not be more excited to announce a strategy for New Hampshire that is based on mutuality, respect, vision and courage to do what we know creates real solutions for the healthcare challenges facing all of us.”
“Over the coming weeks, we look forward to reaching out to our communities, including state and local officials, to seek input regarding our vision for strengthening the health and well-being of our communities to assure affordability and easy access to comprehensive and high quality health care that has defined each of our organizations for more than 125 years," says Rose.
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