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Paynesville Press - October 3, 2001

Merger of health care facilities approached

By Michael Jacobson

Paynesville Area Health Care System and the Good Samaritan Society have been negotiating a possible merger of the Hilltop Good Samaritan Center in Watkins and the Good Samaritan Care Center in Paynesville with PAHCS.

A final agreement has not been reached, but a deal could be finalized in the coming months after a year and a half of on-and-off negotiations.

The possible merger was addressed at the latest meeting of the board of directors of the Paynesville Area Hospital District on Wednesday, Sept. 26.

The executive board for neither organization has been approached with a final merger proposal nor given its approval to one.

Meetings with the staff, residents, and resident families of the Good Samaritan Care Center in Paynes-ville were scheduled for today (Wednesday, Oct. 3). Similar meetings will also be held at the facility in Watkins.

Long-term care facilities throughout the state have faced lean years recently, with costly empty beds plaguing facilities. The industry made a big legislative push last winter to seek financial and regulatory relief as well as help in keeping and training nursing staff.

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