Community Health Systems will invest $10 million for this equipment at Forum Health’s three hospitals — Northside Medical Center, Trumbull Memorial Hospital and Hillside Rehabilitation Hospital:
By Grace Wyler
Just two weeks after acquiring the bankrupt Forum Health, Community Health Systems has taken its first step in fulfilling its pledge to improve the beleaguered hospital system.
CHS announced Thursday that it will invest $10 million to acquire new medical technologies and upgrade physician equipment at Forum Health facilities by the end of the year.
Capital investment is one of the terms of the Tennessee-based hospital company’s $120 million purchase of the Forum system, which was finalized Oct. 1. The company has promised to invest at least $80 million in capital over the next five years.
The initial $10 million investment follows a “head-to-toe assessment” of Forum’s existing equipment, said David Fikse, the hospital system’s newly appointed chief executive.
The funds will support a broad range of hospital services at Forum’s three major hospitals, Fikse said. The initial investment will meet the hospitals’ immediate needs, Fikse said.
The rest of the $80 million investment will go toward a longer-term strategic plan for Forum’s hospitals, Fikse said, which is still being developed.
“It will be a process as we go forward,” he said. “We will be reaching out to our physicians and our staff to see what their needs are.”
Officials from Forum’s unions, who have expressed reservations about Forum’s new for-profit status, said they are pleased with the initial investment.
“All of that equipment is long overdue,” said Debbie Bindas, a spokeswoman for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees which represents nurses and workers and Trumbull Memorial Hospital and Hillside Rehabilitation Hospital. “I’m just happy that CHS is living up to their promise and making the investment.”