Lexington Memorial considers partnership with Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center
LEXINGTON ó Lexington Memorial Hospital’s governing board has voted to begin partnership negotiations with Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem.
The decision to begin formal negotiations was made by the board of directors at its meeting Tuesday. The action follows the recommendation of a special committee, which has evaluated potential partners through a process begun in January.
“At least three to four potential partners were identified for future relationships and subsequently invited to submit formal proposals for consideration,” Charles W. “Chuck” Taylor, board chairman, said in a press release. “Following an intense review of these proposals, Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center rose to the forefront as a partner who can provide a relationship that will preserve Lexington Memorial as a local entity with local governance.”
Taylor added that the ability to ensure this community’s future access to a strong progressive hospital has been paramount in all deliberations. “Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center is a world-renowned medical facility, and its proposal clearly demonstrates a partnership that will provide Lexington Memorial with the necessary resources to advance as a full-service, acute-care hospital with local governance.”
The board will begin negotiations to formalize details of the partnership, with a target date of Oct. 1 for the affiliation to take place.
Small community hospitals across the country are joining larger healthcare systems to continue to provide high-quality, cost-effective services.
“The pressures on hospitals and the projections for the industry constitute a major challenge to our organization, so it is appropriate to join with a large organization that shares our values to ensure a bright future for the health of the community,” said Chuck Miller, vice chairman of the board and chair of the committee that has studied options for the future of Lexington Memorial.
In the past year, Rowan Regional Hospital merged with Novant, the owner of Presbyterian Hospital in Charlotte. NorthEast Medical Center in Concord merged with Carolinas HealthCare System and became Carolinas Medical Center-NorthEast.
In the past six months, Lexington Memorial has informed the community about the process and will continue to communicate as negotiations are completed.