On Sunday, 60 Minutes reported on allegations that Health Management Associates has pressured doctors and staff to beef up their efforts in admitting emergency room patients who didn’t necessarily need to be admitted.
Health Management Associates, or HMA, has relationships with seven hospitals in Oklahoma. The company manages five Integris rural hospitals and has relationships with Midwest Regional Medical Center and Medical Center of Southeastern Oklahoma as well.
I’m in the midst of working on a story for tomorrow’s paper about Oklahoma hospital reactions to the 60 Minutes report. Midwest Regional Medical Center sent me this statement earlier today, which is the general HMA statement. I’m waiting on the statement from Integris.
UPDATED at 3:56 p.m.: Integris sent its statement regarding the 60 Minutes story:
Earlier this year, INTEGRIS Health entered a joint venture agreement with Health Management Associates Inc. to operate five of our regional hospitals located in Blackwell, Clinton, Madill, Pryor and Seminole. The hospitals continue to carry the INTEGRIS name but are being managed by Health Management Associates, an organization specializing in management of smaller and mid-size hospitals across the country.
The concerns expressed in the 60 Minutes story pre-date our partnership, although we were made aware of the claims. HMA has been transparent with us and insists there is no basis for the allegations.
Our focus is always to provide the highest quality care to our patients. We hold our partners to the same high standards.
The relationship between HMA and Integris is a new one. In February, it was announced that HMA and Integris had completed a “definitive agreement to joint venture five Oklahoma hospitals.”
The transaction is subject to normal and customary regulatory approvals and is expected to be completed by March 1, 2012.
The Oklahoma hospitals to be joint ventured include: 53-bed Integris Blackwell Regional Hospital, located in Blackwell; 64-bed Integris Clinton Regional Hospital, located in Clinton; 25-bed Integris Marshall County Medical Center, located in Madill; 52-bed Integris Mayes County Medical Center, located in Pryor; and 32-bed Integris Seminole Medical Center, located in Seminole. Combined, these five hospitals total 226 licensed beds and generated approximately $95 million of revenue over the last twelve months. Under the joint venture, Health Management will own an 80% controlling interest in these five hospitals and will manage their operations.
HMA has had its relationship with the Midwest City hospital since 1996:
Midwest City’s City Council agrees to lease the hospital to Health Management Associates, Inc. for $40 million. The City leaders who still make up the Midwest City Memorial Hospital Authority use the interest from the $40 million to award grants to local organizations.
It will be interesting to see what comes out over the next few months as various reporters follow-up in their local communities about 60 Minutes reporting. As always, feel free to e-mail me or shoot me a tweet.