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Columbia/HCA Completes Hospital Buy

May 02, 1997|(Bloomberg News)

Columbia/HCA Healthcare Corp. said it completed its $70.5-million purchase of a 75% stake in a Riverside hospital and said it agreed to lease another hospital in San Diego. The nation's largest hospital chain said the purchase of nonprofit Riverside Community Hospital was approved by state Atty. Gen. Dan Lungren last week. The purchase will allow the 369-bed hospital to pay off its debt and establish a $22-million foundation in part to treat poor people, the firm said. Columbia also said it agreed to secure a 30-year, prepaid lease to manage Fallbrook District Hospital in San Diego for $4.4 million. Some of Columbia's efforts to acquire stakes in not-for-profits have faced resistance from certain state regulators, who charge the company isn't paying enough. A planned joint venture with Sharp Healthcare, a nonprofit medical system in San Diego, was withdrawn after Lungren objected. Nashville-based Columbia operates 15 hospitals and 13 surgery centers in California. The firm's shares fell 25 cents to close at $34.75 on the New York Stock Exchange.

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