On March 21, 2018, Mission Health System’s Board announced its letter-of-intent to sell to HCA Healthcare Inc. in a news release.
On February 1, 2019, ownership of Mission Health System was transferred to HCA Healthcare, Inc.
In that short time period, members of SEARCH (at the time a loosely formed community action group) realized that we had to become experts on many of the facets of the sale of a non-profit hospital to a for-profit hospital.
Questions we asked ourselves:
Who receives the money when the non-profit is sold?
What do they do with that money?
What will happen to small hospitals like our local Blue Ridge Regional Hospital? Will it be closed? Will it be sold?
Can we see the documents that govern the sale of the hospital?
Will we be able to have any impact on the conditions of the sale?
What we learned is that concerned citizens CAN have an impact.
As was so eloquently stated in a letter to the editor of the Mitchell News-Journal by retired Dr. Arch Woodard entitled Restoring My Faith In Government: “Ordinary citizens can have a voice in their local affairs if they organize themselves and come to a common consensus.”
The history of what we learned, and our continued efforts to retain our local hospital, is contained on these pages.