Hospitals Merging with University

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The hospitals involved for years in a proposed merger have done just that without one. Friday, Jewish, St. Mary's and St. Joseph announced they will form one group. University Hospital is not part of it as they hoped.

The CEO of Jewish Hospital says University Hospital was an integral part of this merger plan they started two years ago. Because Governor Steve Beshear would not give his approval, the private hospitals involved decided to go ahead with the plan anyway. They say it will only mean good thing for their patients.

They are keeping their names, but Jewish, St. Mary's and St. Joseph will work under one new parent company called KentuckyOne.

"It's just thrilling. I mean, that's all you can say. It's just thrilling," says Board Member Gerald Timmons

KentuckyOne says it will mean better care for their patients because they can expand access, improve quality and reduce cost of care. Initially, they say their patients will see changes in things like technology.

"We have utilized robots across the system. We can leverage the resources we have and make better use of them across the organization," says Jewish Hospital CEO David Laird.

However, this merger is not what they had planned to announce when they started their talks two years ago. University Hospital was supposed to be part of the merger until the governor would not give the arrangement the go-ahead.

The new group says they respect his decision. "We're always hopeful that we can do what we set out to do, but quite honestly that's not up to us. What we want doesn't really seem to matter," says Laird.

Governor Beshear said the merger with University is not in the best interest of the Commonwealth. His talks with University continue. He says he'll make a decision based on those next week.

One big concern with the merger was women's care. KentuckyOne says they will not offer sterilizations. It was a procedure St. Mary's and St. Joe did not offer, but Jewish did.

They also say while they are not working with University Hospital, their relationship with University of Louisville medical students continues as it has for the last 60 years.

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