Attorney General approves Colorado Health foundation’s sale of hospital assets to HCA Holdings

DENVER — Colorado Attorney General John Suthers announced today that his office has issued an decision approving HCA Holdings, Inc.’s proposed acquisition of the Colorado Health Foundation’s interest in the HCA-HealthONE hospital system. The Office of the Attorney General determined that the transaction is in the public interest and that the $1.45 billion sale price is a fair market price.

The Office of the Attorney General’s decision, however, was dependent on a series of conditions and modifications to the initially proposed transaction, to which the parties have agreed, including:

  • A guarantee that none of the seven acute-care hospitals will close in the next five years;
  • The board of community trustees will continue for an additional five years beyond the 10 years laid out in the original proposed transaction;
  • The indigent care policy and the community-benefit program will continue for an additional five years beyond the 10 years laid out in the original proposed transaction.
  • The $12 million initially earmarked for the community-benefit program will be compounded annually at the rate of increase in the Medicare reimbursement rate for 10 years and would not decrease even if the Medicare reimbursement rate does.
  • The Office of the Attorney General will mediate any disputes that arise concerning the non-compete agreement prior to the filing of any litigation.

“These requirements will not only ensure that those that rely on the HealthONE hospital system will continue to have access to quality health care, but they also will leave intact the programs that have made these hospitals an invaluable asset for the community,” Suthers said. “This transaction is in the public interest. I am confident that the hospital system as well as the Colorado Health Foundation will continue to be viable and highly beneficial community assets.”

The decision follows public hearings at the Rose Medical Center and Sky Ridge Medical Center campuses as well as input from dozens of Coloradans and interest groups throughout the review process.  The Office of the Attorney General reviewed the process under its common-law authority over charitable organizations (§24-31-101(5), C.R.S.).

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