LR diocese says hospital talks are ‘welcome news’

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (AP) — The Diocese of Little Rock says it’s welcoming the news that Mercy Health is in talks with Catholic Health Initiatives over the sale of its hospital in Hot Springs.

Bishop Anthony Taylor said Thursday that it’s been his “prayer all along” that a Catholic health care provider will remain an option in Hot Springs.

Mercy Health confirmed this week that it’s in talks with Catholic Health Initiatives, which is the parent company of Little Rock’s St. Vincent Health System.

Earlier this year, the Diocese of Little Rock opposed a proposed merger between Mercy Hospital Hot Springs and National Park Medical Center, which is owned by Capella Healthcare, a for-profit company based in Tennessee. That deal later fell through.

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