KU hospital plans to rename St. Francis when sale closes

The financially troubled St. Francis Health Center in Topeka will soon be acquired by the University of Kansas Health System and its partner, Nashville-based Ardent Health Services.

The University of Kansas Health System and Ardent Health Services have finalized terms to purchase — and rename — St. Francis Health in Topeka.

The sale is expected to close Nov. 1, according to a news release. At that time, the hospital’s name will change to the University of Kansas Health System St. Francis Campus.

The agreement is pending regulatory approval from the Kansas Attorney General and other state regulatory agencies, according to the release.

The Journal-World reported in May that KU has partnered with Ardent to purchase St. Francis, which has been struggling financially. For KU, the deal to acquire St. Francis represents the first time it has ever branched out to take ownership of another pre-existing facility, according to the May article.

The Journal-World has also reported that Ardent will be the primary manager of the hospital, and it will convert to for-profit status.

St. Francis is licensed as a 378-bed hospital that employs about 1,600 people in the Topeka area.