SECAUCUS -- The sale of Meadowlands Hospital Medical Center to a group of private investors has received the blessing of the State Health Planning Board.
The nine-member board determined that the sale of the hospital to MHA, LLC would prevent the 230-bed facility from closing. Meadowlands Hospital, which is now owned by LibertyHealth Systems, currently loses about $700,000 a month, according to MHA Principal William Vazquez.
Health Commissioner Poonam Alaigh must still make a decision regarding the sale based on the board's recommendation. She has four months to render a decision.
The Office of the Attorney General and the Dept. of Health and Senior Services are also reviewing the hospital sale, reported to be worth between $15 million and $16 million.
Health advocates and employees of the hospital have asked state agencies to place various conditions on the sale before approving the deal, several of which the Health Planning Board has recommended. Among the conditions the board would like made part of the sale are a written commitment to keep Meadowlands Hospital an acute care facility for at least seven years and an agreement to continue current agreements with insurance companies for at least one year after the sale is finalized.
Last month MHA reached a five-year labor agreement with the Health Professionals and Allied Employees, a union that represents more than 400 nurses and other workers at the hospital. -- E. Assata Wright