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CHS selling some hospitals; WARMC’s status unknown

September 1, 2018

BULLHEAD CITY — Western Arizona Regional Medical Center’s parent corporation is selling some affiliated hospitals. Whether WARMC is part of that sale is unknown.

“Community Health Systems has reported that we are working on transactions that will result in the divestitures of some of our affiliated hospitals,” said Rebecca Ayer, Community Health Systems senior director of corporate communications.

Ayer would not confirm if WARMC is one of the hospitals that may be sold.

“We have not been specific about which hospitals may be included in these transactions, unless we have a binding, legal agreement for the sale of the facility,” Ayer said. “We are highly invested in the future success of all of our affiliated hospitals and the well-being of the communities where we operate.”

Jena Morga, WARMC director of marketing, referred questions about a potential sale to Ayer.

“For more than 30 years, Western Arizona Regional Medical Center has provided quality care to the residents of Bullhead City and the surrounding communities,” Morga said in an email. “We are proud to care for our friends and neighbors and are investing resources to expand access to care and enhance services to meet the community’s needs. In the past year, we have recruited an obstetrician/gynecologist, two orthopedic surgeons, a family practitioner, a pathologist, two anesthesiologists and a spine surgeon to the community and are actively recruiting for several other specialties.”

Tennessee-based Community Health Systems owns, operates or leases 118 hospitals in 20 states and this month reported a 2018 second quarter net loss of $110 million, down from $137 million during the same period in 2017. Operating revenues were down 14 percent from the prior year to $3.56 billion and admissions declined nearly 17 percent during the quarter, according to a CHS press release issued in July.

“Our second quarter results reflect progress in our key areas of strategic focus, most notably improvements in same-store operating results, progress on divestitures and successful refinancings,” Wayne T. Smith, chairman and chief executive officer of Community Health Systems, Inc., said in the press release. “ As we complete additional divestitures this year, we believe our portfolio will become stronger, and more of our resources can be directed to markets where we have the greatest opportunities to drive incremental growth. We remain confident in our ability to strengthen our company through execution of our strategic growth initiatives, investments in high-quality healthcare services, and a continuous focus on expense management.”

Since the beginning of June, the company has announced the sale of seven hospitals in Arkansas, Louisiana, Tennessee, Oklahoma and Florida.

“In any market where a divestiture should occur, we will work to facilitate a smooth ownership transition in order to maintain quality of care and continuity of services for local residents,” Ayer said.

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