BMC said this is an important step in insuring that St. Vincent's will remain a healthcare resource for Staten Island.
The signing was the culmination of a rigorous process to find a new sponsor for St. Vincent's, BMC officials said.
"Bayonne Medical Center conducted its due diligence and has developed a plan and vision for the future of the hospital," said a BMC spokesperson in a public statement. "It is committed to growing St. Vincent's Hospital Staten Island, meeting the critical healthcare needs of Staten Island residents."
"This agreement strengthens the missions of both organizations and allows each to be better able to survive and thrive over the long term," said Herman Brockman, chair of the board, Bayonne Medical Center.
St. Vincent Catholic Medical Centers will retain its Continuing Care programs on Staten Island that include Pax Christi Hospice, Home Care Services, as well as St. Elizabeth Ann's Healthcare & Rehabilitation Center, which is comprised of a nursing facility and its specialty units for neurobehavioral, ventilator-dependent and AIDS patients. St. Vincent's also will continue to operate its supportive housing programs for people living with mental illness on Staten Island.
Behavioral health services provided on the Bayley Seton campus will be assumed by the new entity and will continue to be located on Staten Island.
"The signing of the agreement with Bayonne Medical Center's affiliate provides a level of assurance to the people of Staten Island that health care services will remain on the North Shore of Staten Island," said Guy Sansone, president and CEO of St. Vincent Catholic Medical Centers. "This agreement must still go through a bankruptcy auction and regulatory approvals, but it paves the way for a revitalized hospital for Staten Islanders, and is a positive step toward the planned reorganization of St. Vincent Catholic Medical Centers."
The agreement, along with the proposed procedures for an auction, has been submitted to bankruptcy court for approval, requesting an auction that would make Bayonne Medical Center the preferred bidder. St. Vincent's Hospital will evaluate bids.
"This is an important step in a very long process," explained Robert Evans, president and CEO of Bayonne Medical Center. "Still, this represents progress and we are excited by the opportunities it could create."
St. Vincent's and Bayonne will continue to keep its employees, physicians, elected officials, community leaders, and government officials informed as the process moves forward.
Some questions answered
BMC answered some questions about the sale.
First and foremost, St. Vincent's Hospital - despite rumors - will remain open and operational after the sale, BMC officials said. And while BMC declined to discuss the financing of the purchase, BMC said it will not be expending $100 million in its own operational equity on the purchase.
Reliable sources, however, said $75 million of the purchase cost is coming from the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York, which provides financing and construction services to public and private universities, not-for-profit healthcare facilities and other institutions that serve the public good. But officials said the sale will not require cuts in staff or services at BMC to make up the additional $25 million.