Sale of hospital official Thursday
Valley Health Systems, which has managed Morgan County’s War Memorial Hospital since 1989, will become the new owners of the hospital business on April 1 and acquire the county’s license to build and run a new hospital facility.
The closing of the deal is scheduled to take place during the March 25 meeting of the Morgan County Commission at 10 a.m. County officials have kept open the possibility that they may conduct some of the transaction in closed session.
Hospital president Neil McLaughlin said $1.5 million will be transferred to Morgan County on Thursday, and lots of paperwork with get signed by hospital and county officials to transfer property, deeds and other assets.
Terms of sale
The sale of the hospital business doesn’t include a transfer of the current hospital building or real estate.
Instead, Valley Health will lease the 1920’s brick hospital from the county until the Virginia company completes construction on a new 41-bed, 86,000-square-ft. War Memorial Hospital on Fairview Drive.
Under the sale contract, Valley Health will pay a cash payment of $1.5 million for the hospital business, and will lease the existing facility $57,100 per month for up to three years.
Morgan County’s debt of $1.45 million for the new 80-acre hospital site on Fairview Drive will transfer to Valley Health.
Morgan County will retain a 99-year lease on five acres of that parcel, with the idea of using that land in the future for a new senior center and health department.
The county will also keep ownership of the land and building currently being used for Dr. Hashem’s medical practice on Gayle Drive.
The hospital employs 166 full and part-time employees.
Ground-breaking June 4
A new War Memorial Hospital is expected to cost $30 million. Hospital officials will start opening bids from general contractors for the project on April 1, said hospital president Neil McLaughlin. They could select a contractor by May 1, he said.
A groundbreaking ceremony for the project is planned for Friday, June 4. McLaughlin estimates a move into the new hospital in April 2012.