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Wave of Hospital Mergers Continues

Thursday, February 15, 2018
Beth Strella

The ongoing trend of hospital mergers shows no signs of slowing down, according to a new Kaufman, Hall & Associates analysis. By the end of the third quarter of 2017, hospitals and health systems had completed 87 deals, which puts 2017 on pace to exceed 2016’s 102 deals.

Advocates of hospital mergers believe that such alignment can decrease costs due to economies of scale, drive quality improvements through standardization of clinical protocols and expand the scope of services available to patients. Conversely, others argue that the decreased competition among health care systems is a driver of patient costs.

What’s more, CVS’s plan to acquire Aetna could not only be the largest U.S. health care deal in history, but also change the way Americans receive health care. Health care systems across the country will need to pay attention to the impact of this megadeal as it moves forward.

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