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UPHS Purchasing Graduate Hospital from Tenet
January 30, 2007, Volume 53, No. 20

The Executive Committee of Penn’s Board of Trustees met last Tuesday and passed a resolution to approve the transaction related to the purchase of Graduate Hospital and the establishment of a new long-term acute care hospital and an inpatient rehabilitation facility.

That allowed the University of Pennsylvania Health System (UPHS) to enter into an agreement to purchase Graduate Hospital from Tenet Healthcare Corporation. UPHS will continue Graduate’s 80-year tradition of providing quality health care to its community by converting the hospital into a comprehensive rehabilitation center and operating it in partnership with Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network. Once Graduate Hospital is refurbished, it will also house a long-term acute care hospital and provide enhanced educational and research opportunities related to the science of rehabilitation medicine. The purchase is expected to be complete by March 30, 2007. The financial terms were not disclosed at this time.

“The development of these specialized services at Graduate Hospital is an important step for UPHS to meet the current and future needs of patients throughout the Delaware Valley,” said Ralph W. Muller, CEO of UPHS.

Mr. Muller added, “This facility will expand our ability to offer the finest rehabilitative care to a greater number of patients across a wider geographic area.”

“We are delighted to have found a buyer for Graduate Hospital that will continue to provide the community with much-needed health care services at that site,” said Trevor Fetter, Tenet’s president and CEO. “UPHS’ plan for the hospital made the best sense for our patients, our physicians, our employees and our community.”

UPHS also announced that it has formed a joint venture with Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network, based in Allentown, to develop Graduate into one of the region’s largest and most comprehensive rehabilitation facilities. Good Shepherd Penn Partners will convert the hospital at 1800 Lombard Street. Construction is expected to begin after the sale is complete and take approximately 15 months, and the new facility will open to patients in the summer of 2008.

“Together with Good Shepherd, we will soon be providing a continuum of care through nationally accredited inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation programs and services that have been shown to return patients to their highest potential of functional independence,” added Mr. Muller.

“The transfer in ownership and conversion of Graduate Hospital into a 38-bed long-term acute care and rehabilitation facility is good for the community and the health care delivery system in Southeastern Pennsylvania,” said Governor Edward G. Rendell. “UPHS and Tenet should be congratulated for the careful and sensitive planning that has gone into this transaction. Ultimately this change will also result in continued job opportunities in Philadelphia. In the meantime, the state will work with Penn and Tenet to ensure that any worker who may be affected in the short-term by this transfer and conversion process, will have the opportunity to find other employment.”

Graduate Hospital employees will have the opportunity to pursue a transfer to other Tenet hospitals or to UPHS for positions for which they are qualified, or apply for positions at the new facility when it reopens. Job fairs, employment counseling and appropriate severance will be provided by Tenet to those employees who do not receive offers of comparable employment at other Tenet or UPHS facilities.

Conversion plans have been carefully designed to minimize the disruption of patient care services. During construction, patients who would have been previously treated at Graduate Hospital will be able to receive care at one of at least five nearby hospitals, including: HUP, Pennsylvania Hospital, Hahnemann University Hospital, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center. As Graduate converts to an advanced rehabilitation center, an urgent care center staffed by UPHS physicians will be open to meet the health care needs of the surrounding community.

 

Almanac - January 30, 2007, Volume 53, No. 20