Bankrupt Clinton County Hospital in talks with Bowling Green Medical Center about possible sale

The bankrupt Clinton County Hospital in Albany is discussing a sale to the parent firm of the Bowling Green Medical Center, which already “owns several hospitals in south-central Kentucky,” the Clinton County News reports.

The hospital’s directors voted this month “to initiate discussions regarding a potential acquisition by Commonwealth Health Corporation . . . a not-for-profit parent company of the Medical Centers
in Bowling Green, Scottsville and Franklin.”

The hospital said in a news release that it “asked CHC to evaluate operations at Clinton County
Hospital to determine the feasibility of Commonwealth Health Corporation
assuming ownership and operation of Clinton County Hospital.” It quoted hospital Administrator J.D. Mullins as saying, “In
an effort to help stabilize operations of our hospital and to have
access to the capital needed to support its ongoing mission in service
to the local community, Clinton County Hospital invited Commonwealth
Health Corporation to analyze our facility, services and financial
position and to meet with our local physicians. This
review is in its preliminary stage and no time frame was set for its
conclusion.”

The news reports, “The
only additional information Mullins would give was that the next step
in the process would see Commonwealth Health executives meeting with
local physicians who are on staff at the hospital.”

The hospital went into Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization more than a year ago, after being unable to repay a $15 million U.S. Department of Agriculture loan that it received to expand and modernize the hospital in the county of 10,000 on the Tennessee border south of Lake Cumberland. The project was completed in 2008. The hospital has blamed its problems on federal budget cuts and changes in Medicare and Medicaid, which provide more than 80 percent of the hospital’s revenue — particularly the managed-care companies that oversee Medicaid.

USDA recently forgave more than half the $18 million in accumulated debt, leaving $8,465,000 still owed. Mullins said at the time that the settlement could make the hospital more attractive to a buyer.

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