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LifePoint Bolsters Presence in Michigan's Upper Peninsula

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, December 9, 2013

"It is one more analytical part of every puzzle," he says. "Whether or not the exceptions will continue will have no bearing on our commitments to the hospital."

In the deal with Portage, LifePoint will own 80% of the joint venture and Portage Health will retain a 20% ownership stake. Governance will be equally shared, and an eight-member board with equal representation from Portage and LifePoint will be established to ensure that the community has an active voice in Portage Health's future.

Over the next decade, LifePoint will invest $60 million in capital improvements at Portage, including upgrades for technology and equipment and improved facilities. The $40 million in proceeds from the deal and retained assets from Portage Health will support the retained businesses and create a locally governed charitable foundation, according to a joint media release.

"As we considered Portage Health's future, our board vetted a number of strategic partner options," Portage Board Chairman Steve Zutter said in prepared remarks. "This joint venture with LifePoint offered us a unique opportunity to share ownership of Portage Health and gain access to significant resources to grow and expand our services. We are excited for the future."

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