A Beaumont Health System executive said Tuesday that the organization is considering strategic partnerships with other institutions, but refuted a rumor the hospital is for sale.
Colette Stimmell, Beaumont's director of corporate communications, said Tuesday afternoon that the Royal Oak-based health system's executive board is meeting today and one of the agenda items is strategic partnerships.
"Our board and executive team have been involved in strategic planning discussions for some time now. As part of that, we've been talking with many organizations locally and across the country and these are confidential discussions so I can't discuss the names of any of the organizations we've been talking with," she said. "As soon as we make a decision, we will make an announcement. We're not quite there yet but I expect it will be soon."
Stimmell couldn't discuss entails of what a potential partnership would look like but said the health system has considered "a variety of options."
One thing is clear: "We are not up for sale," she said. "Acquisition is not an option."
Beaumont's name won't be changing, either, she said.
Crain's Detroit Business reported that an unnamed tipster told the publication that Detroit-based Henry Ford Health System's board voted Friday to acquire Beaumont. However, the Crain's report also noted Henry Ford spokesman Dwight Angell said that while the system's board of trustees did meet to discuss potential partnerships, he could not confirm any details.
Stimmell said a decision and an announcement on strategic partnerships could come any time.
Whatever happens, there could be implications in Grosse Pointe, the home of both Beaumont Hospital Grosse Pointe and Henry Ford Medical Center Cottage.
"We recognize people are anxious to know. Our employees are anxious to know. They've known that the discussions are going on," she said. "We want to get the information out as soon as we can."
Regardless of what decision is made, patients won't be affected, she said.
"We will continue to take care of patients as we always have," she said.
As for why Beaumont has been considering strategic partnerships, Stimmell said it has to do with health care reform.
"Health care organizations are all talking with each other and pursuing various types of relationships," she said. "It's all related to changes in the health care industry, health care reform, declining reimbursement.
"Here in Michigan, and across the country, organizations are getting together and forming various types of relationships. We're trying to be proactive to make sure that we can remain a leading health care system," Stimmel said. "In order to do that you have to look ahead at what changes are occurring and be prepared to respond to those. That's why our board and executive team have been involved in these discussions."