By Christina Sampson | Casa Grande Dispatch
Banner Health has signed a letter of intent to acquire Casa Grande Regional Medical Center, a Monday press release said.
Rona Curphy, president and CEO of the local, nonprofit hospital, told the Casa Grande Dispatch on Monday that acquisition had the full support of the hospital’s board.
“It was a unanimous decision to move forward with Banner,” Curphy said. “It really allows us, as we move into 2014, to really provide a bright future for our residents in our area.”
The hospital will continue to operate normally throughout the transition, the press release said.
Banner Health is a Phoenix non-profit health care system that manages 23 acute-care hospitals and medical facilities ranging from long-term care centers to family clinics. The system facilitates both the Banner Health Net- work and Banner Medical Group. It operates in seven states.
Curphy cautioned that the letter- of-intent phase of negotiations is the beginning of a long, complex process, including regulatory approval, expected to end during the spring of 2014.
In the meantime, Banner Health has agreed to provide interim funding to CGRMC on an as-needed basis until the process is complete.
“To me that really talks about how serious they are,” Curphy said.
She spent much of Monday meeting with hospital employees about the transition and said hospital staff gave a positive response to the news.
CGRMC began a reorganization process in November when it hired the national consulting firm Hammond Hanlon Camp. Over the past three fiscal years, the cost of unpaid care for CGRMC has mushroomed from $13 million in 2011 to $42 mil- lion in 2013.