The nation's second-largest Catholic-owned hospital chain is to announce today that it plans to acquire two big hospitals in Long Beach and San Bernardino as part of a major expansion into Southern California.
Catholic Healthcare West, a 25-hospital chain based in San Francisco, said it plans to acquire the assets of St. Mary Medical Center in Long Beach and St. Bernardine Medical Center in San Bernardino from Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word, a Houston-based Catholic hospital group. Financial details were not disclosed.
Catholic Healthcare West said the deal is the result of intense cost cutting in health care that is squeezing the profits of hospitals generally and threatening the survival of many inner-city Catholic hospitals. The chain said economies of scale will enable it to cut costs at the hospitals by as much as 10% and enhance their appeal to health-maintenance organizations.
The nonprofit San Francisco hospital chain "is a much bigger organization, and this merger is essential to the continuation of our mission in California," said Dr. David B. Tillman, chief executive of St. Mary Medical Center.