Carroll County, Maryland Department of Economic Development

Economic Development News

LifeBridge Health, Carroll Hospital Center finalize deal

Sarah Gantz
Reporter- Baltimore Business Journal

Carroll Hospital Center has finalized an agreement to become a subsidiary of LifeBridge Health, effective
April 1, 2015.

Baltimore-based LifeBridge and Carroll Hospital Center in November announced plans to partner. As part of the deal, LifeBridge will invest $250 million to build and renovate facilities, and to expand medical services at the 193-bed Westminster hospital. LifeBridge will put an additional $50 million toward the Carroll Hospital Center Foundation’s endowment fund, which supports patient care, scholarships, community education and other community programs.

Carroll Hospital Center will retain its board and leadership under LifeBridge.

“The biggest message I want to get across is how important this is going to be for our community,” Carroll CEO Leslie Simmons said in an interview Friday. “It secures for us our programs and services will remain local, and expand local.”

Carroll, one of the few independent hospitals in Maryland, sought out a partner or buyer in an effort to get ahead of mounting pressure on hospitals to improve quality, cut costs and grow under tight budgets — challenges that are often more difficult for hospitals that lack a larger system to lean on.

With $1.3 billion in gross revenue in 2013, LifeBridge is the fourth-largest hospital system in the area, though still significantly smaller than Johns Hopkins Medicine, MedStar Health and University of Maryland Medical System. LifeBridge’s primary assets include Sinai Hospital of Baltimore, Northwest Hospital and Levindale Hebrew Geriatric Center and Hospital.

Acquiring Carroll is a way for LifeBridge to expand its reach into new territory by partnering with a like-minded organization.

"Having Carroll really strengthens our organization. It’s allowing us to expand our services and grow our collective network," LifeBridge CEO Neil Meltzer said in an interview. "Our philosophy has always been about smart, strategic growth."

LifeBridge and Carroll both have a strong focus on community health and in recent years have made moves to better integrate with the health resources patients will need when they leave the hospital.

As part of the deal, LifeBridge has committed to supporting Carroll’s strategic plan, which includes strengthening programs such as cardiovascular, cancer and home care, surgery.

Simmons said LifeBridge’s investment in Carroll will go toward a new neonatal intensive care unit, an ambulatory care center, and new community based programs.

Reposted from: Baltimore Business Journal

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