Charlottesville hospital plans to merge with Sentara

An independent hospital in Charlottesville announced today its intent to merge with Norfolk-based Sentara Healthcare. Martha Jefferson Hospital is a 176-bed nonprofit hospital that was founded in 1903.

According to a release on its website, the Charlottesville hospital decided to merge with Sentara to keep up-to-date with technology and integrated information systems. The statement said those qualities will put the hospital in a better position to address health-care reform efforts.

This is the latest in a string of mergers with smaller, independent hospitals that Sentara has been involved with during the past few years. In July, officials of 238-bed Rockingham Memorial Hospital in Harrisonburg also announced plans to merge with Sentara. Last year, a 183-bed hospital in Woodbridge, now called Sentara Potomac Hospital, merged with Sentara.

The most recent affiliation could take six months or more to finalize and would also need approval from the Federal Trade Commission and the state attorney general.

“We are always looking to the future at Martha Jefferson, and as part of our strategic planning process, we have determined we would be in a stronger position to continue delivering on our mission of improving the health status of our community by joining an integrated system,” Jim Haden, Martha Jefferson Hospital President and CEO, said in a prepared statement.

The Martha Jefferson Health Services Board of Directors began looking at the possibility of joining another system in 2008.

The Virginian-Pilot

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