Merging Hospitals Irk Locals In Boston, Orlando
Boston Catholics have asked Pope Benedict to intervene in the sale of Caritas Christi Health Care, a nonprofit Catholic hospital, to Cerberus Capital Management, a private equity firm, despite pledges that the hospital will retain its "religious identity," The Boston Globe reports. "[T]he stewardship agreement [Cerberus] negotiated with the Archdiocese of Boston would allow the hospital chain's new owners to terminate its religious affiliation, if it became materially burdensome, in exchange for a $25 million donation to a charity chosen by the archdiocese." That led members of the Coalition to Save Catholic Health Care to compare the agreement to the payment of Judas Iscariot for betraying Jesus in a letter to the pope (8/11).
Also in hospital news, "Health Central, the only independent hospital in the Metro Orlando area, is looking for a partner, preferably one that is big, powerful and operates in the black," the Orlando Sentinel reports. "In a move that signals the end of the small community hospital locally, Health Central officials have announced they will start negotiating with hospital systems that could help them expand into cancer care and other large programs requiring deeper pockets than the small hospital has" (Shrieves, 8/10).