UNC Health Care confirms talks to “work together” with Vidant, but no merger discussion
UNC Health Care said it has “no plan, secret or otherwise, to acquire or partner with Vidant Health.” UNC officials have talked with Vidant CEO Mike Waldrum about “the potential to work together to improve the health and well-being of the citizens of eastern North Carolina,” UNC spokesperson Lisa Schiller said. The comments came in a press release issued today after Vidant said it was under attack from “Raleigh politicians” scheming to hurt the Greenville-based health care system. Vidant has annual revenue of more than $1.7 billion and is a not-for-profit authority affiliated with Pitt County. UNC Health Care, with $3 billion in annual revenue, is a unit of the 17-campus UNC System, which includes East Carolina University in Greenville.
Here is the press release:
“UNC Health Care has no plan, secret or otherwise, to acquire or partner with Vidant Health. Even if there were plans, secrecy would be impossible. A combination of UNC Health Care and Vidant Health would require the approval of multiple public entities and boards. It would also require a public bidding process under State law.
“Like all hospital systems, the UNC Health Care System is keenly aware of the rapid consolidation occurring across the country. All systems look frequently to consider potential partners. The leaked document was prepared by a consulting firm hired by the UNC Board of Governors to illustrate and educate them on what the consolidating health care market might look like in the future. It was not prepared to evaluate partners or to pursue new partners.
“UNC Health Care has had numerous conversations with Vidant’s CEO Mike Waldrum and his leadership about the potential to work together to improve the health and well-being of the citizens of eastern North Carolina. None of these conversations discussed mergers or take overs. UNC Health has the responsibility, through the North Carolina General Statutes and its mission to offer care to all of the citizens of North Carolina – not one region over another. In addition, Mike Waldrum has talked with the UNC System and members of the Board of Governors in the past about the possibility of combining with UNC Health Care. Based on these conversations, UNC Health Care has never pursued it. As the rapid pace of health care changes, we wish Vidant Health success as they negotiate this landscape.”