NEW: Care New England, Partners Request “Expedited” HCA Review But Have Not Submitted Application

Friday, August 10, 2018


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Partners and Care New England

Care New England (CNE) and Partners HealthCare have asked the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) for an "expedited review" of a transfer of hospital ownership through the Hospital Conversion Act (HCA) -- but according to the state, an actual HCA application has yet to be filed. 

The move comes just days after Partners, CNE, and Brown University signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) regarding a joint partnership, just months after Brown University President Christina Paxson blistered Partners, a Boston-based healthcare conglomerate and their plan to enter the Rhode Island market via their acquisition of the financial fledgling CNE -- and weeks after Governor Gina Raimondo took in tens of thousands from a Partners-board member hosted fundraiser in Massachusetts. 

According to the RIDOH spokesperson Joseph Wendelken, the state has in the past responded to request for expedited review within two weeks; if granted it would allow for a decision to be made on the HCA application in 90 days, versus the normal 120, meaning that decision on a Partners takeover of CNE could occur as soon as November. 

SLIDES: See Request for Expedited Review BELOW

"Applications for transfers in hospital ownership are reviewed under the state’s Hospital Conversion Act. We did not receive a Hospital Conversion Act application. What we received was a request from the two parties for a future Hospital Conversion Act application to get an expedited review. The differences between an expeditated review and a normal review are listed online (see page 2)," said Joseph Wendelken at the Rhode Island Department of Health. "Some of the more significant differences are that a decision needs to come from RIDOH on an expediated review within 90 days, not 120 days. There are also differences in the documentation that needs to be submitted. In the past, RIDOH has responded to applicants’ requests for expedited reviews within roughly two weeks."

"There are specific criteria (listed here) that Dr. Alexander-Scott will use to determine whether the request for an expedited review will be granted. They are primarily economic. (For example, “The acquiree operates one or more distressed Rhode Island hospitals facing significant financial hardship that may impair its or their ability to continue to operate effectively without the proposed conversion and have been determined to be distressed by the director of health," said Wendelken.

"Based on the information submitted by the two parties, we make a determination on whether a transaction between them would be eligible for an expeditated review. (For example, the financials that they submit.) In this letter, they wrote that this filing was being made in anticipation of a second filing, which would be the actual HCA application," said Wendelken 


Related Slideshow: CNE-Partners Expedited HCA Request


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