Two weeks from this coming Monday, proposals for a sale, partnership or merger with New Hanover Regional Medical Center are due. The Partnership Advisory Group, a team assembled by the County to explore the future of NHRMC, will then begin the process of going through hundreds of pages sent in from interested parties. Almost a dozen organizations may be interested in some sort of arrangement.
At last night’s Advisory Group meeting, the list of organizations expected to submit a proposal sat at nine. No proposals have been sent in yet, and none are expected before the March 16 deadline.
Thursday night’s meeting focused on the possibility of remaining independent, and on long-range financial plans and options.
Some believe providing anticipated future services could mean tax increases. PAG member Bill Cameron.
“Here's my understanding, is if we stay as we are with the financial plan as it is, to fund the strategic plan and do those things, the revenue shortfalls of the hospital will not do it. So if things go well, it would take 21 percent (more funding). 21 percent. If some of the problems, some of the payment methods change, we lose, some things could happen. If those things happen, which makes the financial position worse than if things go well, to fund the strategic plan it would take a 68% increase because this hospital is a County hospital.”
Others say that’s speculation, and a worst-case scenario.
After all the proposals have been reviewed, the PAG will make a recommendation to County Commissioners on the medical center’s future. A public hearing is expected in April. All the proposals will be made available to the public within a few weeks.
(New Hanover Regional Medical Center is an underwriter of WHQR)
Learn more about the process - https://nhrmcfuture.org/