CAH Acquires GPC Hospital

April 13th, 2010

History was made on October 4, 2007 when Charlie Slaton, CEO of Critical Access Healthcare, LLC (CAH) announced the company’s acquisition of Golden Plains Community Hospital, a 25-bed critical access hospital in Borger, Texas.

Under the terms of the September 30, 2007 agreement, CAH acquired all of the assets of Golden Plains Community Hospital – except for the existing hospital building – from the Hutchinson County Hospital District. CAH operates the existing facility under a lease agreement with the District until the new hospital is completed during the summer of 2011. The new facility will also be owned by the District and leased by CAH.

Golden Plains Community Hospital had steadily lost market share over much of the last two decades, in large part because of the deterioration of its physical plant. The original hospital was constructed in 1937 and the weighted average of the hospital’s plant is 49 years. Recognizing the community’s need for a new hospital, the District Board considered a number of funding options, including a $25 million bond issue. This proposal was defeated in a September 2004 public referendum. The Board decided to seek a buyer for the hospital who would agree to build a replacement facility.

CAH brought a unique solution to the Board: A Public/Private Collaboration model that is designed to build upon the strengths of both parties. The District, with a deep community commitment, provides tax support to care for indigent patients as well as operate the Borger EMS. CAH provides management, capital resources and reimbursement improvements.

“CAH made the best offer with the most integrity, not just in terms of their willingness to commit in writing to building a new facility, but also in terms of their history and the reputation of their people,” said Jason Vance, then chairman of the Hutchinson County Hospital District Board of Directors. “The other bidders didn’t rise to that level of credibility with the Board. I believe we came up with the optimal solution. I have confidence that with CAH we’ll finally have the medical services this community needs and deserves.”

CAH’s long-term plans for the new facility include recruiting physicians, adding services, maintaining the District’s charity care guidelines and continuing the tradition of District representation on the governing Board. CAH also will focus on improving operations and making the hospital profitable.

“We have created a partnering relationship between CAH and the Hospital District,” said Slaton. “We will work together to give the citizens of Hutchinson County a new, fiscally strong hospital and together we will improve the health of this community. We believe we are creating a sustainable model for rural healthcare in the future.”