Backus and Hartford HealthCare sign Memorandum of Understanding
July 10, 2012
NORWICH (May 24, 2012) — Backus Corporation and Hartford HealthCare have signed a Memorandum of Understanding — a legal document that outlines how a formal partnership of the healthcare systems would function. The agreement marks a significant milestone as both organizations continue to move forward with their proposed affiliation.
If approved, Backus would become a member of the Hartford HealthCare network, which includes Hartford Hospital, the Hospital of Central Connecticut, MidState Medical Center, Natchaug Hospital, Windham Hospital, a large primary care physician group and a wide spectrum of additional health services.
The governing boards of both organizations signed a Letter of Intent to explore a formal affiliation in February. Since then, both boards have formed subcommittees to assess the strategic alignment of Backus and Hartford HealthCare. Representatives from both potential partners have also been engaged in providing insight into their respective operations and community needs.
“My colleagues and I are enthused about this process, and the stronger, more integrated system of care we believe an affiliation will provide,” said David Whitehead, Backus president and chief executive officer. “After serious review, our board has concluded that the integration of Backus and Hartford HealthCare would provide the necessary benefits for the individuals and communities we serve.”
An affiliation would enable both organizations to share the knowledge and expertise of their staffs and physicians and give patients easier access to a wider range of services, technology and treatments.
“Throughout this process, we continue to be impressed with the caliber of Backus — its Medical Staff, employees and leadership,” said Elliot Joseph, president and chief executive officer of Hartford HealthCare. “Backus and Hartford HealthCare share a true commitment to community-based care. Coming together, we strengthen our ability to serve the communities of Eastern Connecticut well into the future.”
Before signing the Memorandum of Understanding, both organizations performed due diligence to determine if an affiliation would be in the best interest of patients and communities served by the institutions. Backus and Hartford HealthCare will now work on creating a definitive agreement, which is expected to be in place by July. They will then work with state and federal officials to obtain regulatory approval. This process usually takes several months.
Backus Corporation is the parent of the Backus Healthcare System, which includes The William W. Backus Hospital, Backus Health Care Inc., Backus Home Health Care, Backus Physician Services, Community Medical Partners, CONNCare and WWB Corp.
Hartford HealthCare’s members include Hartford Hospital (an 867-bed regional referral center that is one of the largest teaching hospitals and tertiary care centers in New England), a community tertiary hospital and two acute-care community hospitals: The Hospital of Central Connecticut (414 beds, with campuses in New Britain and Southington), MidState Medical Center (144 beds, in Meriden) and Windham Hospital (130 beds, in Willimantic). Other system member providers include two regional behavior health centers, a statewide clinical laboratory operation, a large primary care physician practice group, a large multi- specialty surgical group, a regional home care system, long-term care facilities and a physical therapy and rehabilitation network.
The Backus Health System includes The William W. Backus Hospital, a 213-bed acute care hospital that is the only state-licensed Trauma Center east of the Connecticut River; a home healthcare agency; primary care and walk-in urgent care centers in Ledyard, Plainfield, Montville and Colchester; Backus Physician Services, a multi-specialty surgical group; and Community Medical Partners, a medical foundation. Backus is one of two sole members of Hospice Southeastern Connecticut, and has an ownership interest in dialysis centers in the region.