December 12, 2016
Reporter's Notebook

Hartford HealthCare eyes $16.7M surgery-center stake

Hartford HealthCare is seeking to expand its eastern Connecticut offerings through a $16.7 million equity stake in a Waterford ophthalmology center, according to state records.

The growing health system — which could soon encompass six acute-care hospitals — has asked state regulators permission for 233-bed Backus Hospital to acquire a controlling 51 percent stake in Constitution Surgery Center East LLC.

The total capital cost listed in Hartford HealthCare's certificate of need application is $16.7 million. Constitution, an outpatient facility that provides ophthalmology and orthopedic services, is majority-owned by a group of 21 physicians, who all have privileges at Backus or other area hospitals.

Constitution said the deal would create economies of scale in purchasing, managerial and administrative functions; help with physician recruitment; improve access to capital; and provide its physicians with more opportunities to collaborate and access new technologies through Hartford HealthCare, which performs over 11,000 ophthalmic procedures a year at its Hartford Hospital Eye Surgery Center.

Hartford HealthCare's board of directors directed Backus in July to proceed with the acquisition.

– Matt Pilon

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