Sentara Healthcare, Cone Health call off merger talks

After announcing last August they would join forces, Sentara Healthcare and Cone Health have called off their merger plans.

The Norfolk-based Sentara Healthcare and Cone Health, headquartered in Greensboro with facilities across the Triad said in a joint statement Wednesday their respective boards came to a mutual agreement to end affiliation plans late last week.

The not-for-profit healthcare systems added that each of their communities and key stakeholders require support and commitments from their respective organizations that are better served by remaining independent.

“Sentara Healthcare and Cone Health are high performing, well respected, community-focused organizations. Those similarities served as the basis for efforts toward an affiliation. I am confident that this mutual decision will not alter either organization’s ongoing commitment to meet the needs of our respective communities. Sentara and Cone Health remain aligned and in agreement that our first priority is to those we serve, and we believe this will be better done as independent organizations,“ says Howard P. Kern, President and Chief Executive Officer, Sentara Healthcare. “I have no doubt that Cone Health will remain a top tier health system and will continue to pursue new and innovative ways to provide value for North Carolinians for years to come.”

Terry Akin, Chief Executive Officer of Cone Health, says, “We appreciate the efforts of Sentara to work with Cone Health to determine whether an affiliation of our two high-performing organizations is in the best interest of those we serve. Recently, in the final analysis, we mutually decided that we can best serve our communities by remaining independent organizations. We have developed a high regard for the excellent services and outcomes Sentara delivers, and we expect both our organizations to continue to advance our common goals of providing outstanding care for our respective communities.”

“We have appreciated the opportunity to work with another outstanding health system toward furthering leading-edge, high quality health and health care across our communities. After significant evaluation, we are certain that this is the best path forward for the future of Cone Health and the many people throughout our region who rely on us to deliver our very best,” says FD Hornaday III, Chairman of the Cone Health Board of Trustees.

Dian Calderone, Chairwoman of the Sentara Healthcare Board of Directors, says, “The Sentara Healthcare Board of Directors is very appreciative of the efforts undertaken by both organizations toward a shared goal of improving and advancing healthcare in Virginia and North Carolina. We have learned a great deal during our time together and I believe this will serve both of us well in the future. Sentara will continue to concentrate on improving health and well-being for the communities we serve and I am confident that Cone Health will do the same.”

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