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Natchez Community Hospital’s parent company acquired

Published 12:02am Tuesday, January 28, 2014

NATCHEZ — The acquisition of Natchez Community Hospital’s parent company — Health Management Associates — was completed Monday, but hospital officials say the transaction will not impact local operations.

Community Health Systems Inc. announced Monday it completed the previously announced acquisition of HMA that shareholders overwhelmingly voted to approve earlier this month.

“We are excited about being a part of the nation’s largest healthcare system, as measured by the number of hospitals,” said NCH Chief Executive Officer Eric Robinson. “We look forward to the benefits that will be available to us through the sharing of best practices and a broader network of resources.”

Robinson said NCH will continue to operate under the same name and practices.

“The transaction does not impact local operations,” Robinson said. “We will continue to participate in the same managed care contracts and government reimbursement programs.

“Most importantly, the community will continue to receive the high-quality care they have come to expect from the nurses, physicians and employees they already know and trust.”

Effective Monday, HMA will cease trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

HMA shareholders will receive $10.50 per share in cash plus 0.06942 shares of CHS common stock for each HMA share they own.

HMA shareholders will also receive one Contingent Value Right (CVR) for each HMA share they own, which could yield additional cash consideration of up to $1 per share, depending on the outcome of certain matters described in HMA’s public filings under the “Legal Proceedings” section.

HMA and its affiliates own and manage 71 hospitals in 15 states with approximately 11,000 licensed beds, including NCH, Central Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson and eight other hospitals in Mississippi.

Through its affiliates, CHS now owns, leases or operates 206 hospitals in 29 states.

The organization’s affiliates employ more than 135,000 people, and approximately 27,000 physicians serve on the medical staffs of CHS-affiliated hospitals.

According to the company, it is one of the United States’ largest publicly traded hospital companies and is the sole provider of health care services in 55 percent of the markets its serves.

CHS, which is headquartered in Franklin, Tenn., operates River Region Health System in Vicksburg and Wesley Medical Center in Hattiesburg.

In a statement from CHS, President and CEO Wayne T. Smith said the company was pleased with the transaction.

“This transaction provides us with increased scale and broader geographic reach as we work to create strong healthcare networks across the nation,” Smith said.