Archive for Monday, November 13, 1995

OUTLINES LMH MERGER OPTIONS

November 13, 1995

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A paper outlining the options that Lawrence Memorial Hospital trustees face will include assessments of the legal and financial ramifications of three partnership proposals that have been before the board for nine months.

The so-called "white paper" is due to be released to the public Tuesday, when the hospital's board of trustees holds its regular monthly meeting.

The meeting, in the hospital's auditorium at 325 Maine, starts at 8 a.m.

Janice Early-Weas, a hospital representative, said Friday that the paper contains about 70 pages and was written by board chairman Howard Mossberg and board members Ray Davis and Bob Johnson, with the help of attorneys.

The preparation and release of the paper will bring the nine-member board one step closer to reaching a decision on whether to accept any of three partnership proposals the board received in February and March.

The proposals came from Columbia/HCA Healthcare Corp., the for-profit owner of an urgent care and outpatient surgery center at 3500 Clinton Pkwy., and from groups including St. Luke's Hospital of Kansas City, Mo., and the Kansas University Medical Center in Kansas City, Kan.

The paper to be released Tuesday will include an evaluation of the relative merits of for-profit vs. not-for-profit hospitals. That's a crucial issue for some community members who have already said they oppose selling a stake in LMH to Columbia/HCA, which is an investor-owned company based in Nashville, Tenn. Columbia/HCA has proposed a 50-50 joint venture with LMH.

Supporters and opponents of the proposals will have a month to digest the board's assessment of the options. The board plans to hold a public forum in mid-December, when community members can offer their opinions on the proposals.

Mossberg has said he hopes the board will be able to make a decision in January about which, if any, of the proposals to pursue.

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