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SEARHC Board Approves Agreements Pending Resolution of Outstanding Liabilities

SITKA – At the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium’s (SEARHC) Board of Directors’ meeting on April 26, 2019, the Asset Purchase Agreement (APA) and Lease Agreement to develop Sitka’s integrated healthcare delivery system were approved pending satisfactory resolution of outstanding liabilities. The City and Borough of Sitka (CBS) is in the process of providing SEARHC with data clarifying the outstanding compliance-related liabilities. Upon receipt and review of the information, SEARHC must conclude that the liabilities have been adequately addressed for the transaction to close by June 30. If the liabilities are satisfactorily resolved, the deal will close the last day of June, and SEARHC will assume the operations of Sitka Community Hospital (SCH).

“The SEARHC Board has been kept well informed throughout the entire negotiating process, and the vote to move forward reflects the Directors’ fierce commitment to our mission,” said SEARHC President and Chief Executive Officer Charles Clement.

The APA requires SEARHC provide access to enhanced primary and specialty services to all residents with acute care services located at Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital and long-term care, rehabilitation and outpatient services at SCH. Within three to five years of the closing date, SEARHC will begin building a new campus. The APA also calls for the creation of the Community Health Council to provide input on the clinical and healthcare needs of Sitka, patient satisfaction, quality of care and quality improvement.

As part of the agreement, SEARHC will offer SCH employees in good standing similar positions to those they currently hold, and employees can transfer up to 80 hours of paid time off. SCH will be responsible for paying out anything in excess of 80 hours directly to the employee.

The Lease Agreement specifies the terms for SEARHC to lease and operate SCH as a long-term care facility until all services are moved to the new medical campus.

“With the finish line in sight, our focus is on getting acceptable information from the CBS on the compliance-related liabilities in time for the closing date,” said Clement.