Hospital board retains consultant

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MOUNT GILEAD — The Morrow County Hospital Board of Trustees acted on two items of business relating to the recently submitted proposal by Avita Health Systems to the Morrow County Commission, according to a news release issued by Patrick Drouhard, board chair.

At its regularly scheduled September Board meeting, the trustees passed a resolution to retain the services of ECG Management Consultants to provide a thorough review of Avita’s proposal, its merits and how it might impact the future of the hospital.

ECG was the same firm that led the board through its recent request for proposal process that resulted with an agreement with OhioHealth back in May. Avita, along with OhioHealth, had submitted a proposal to the trustees, but was not selected to partner with Morrow County Hospital at that time.

ECG will conduct a “reverse” due diligence of Avita, to help the trustees to determine if it has the wherewithal to keep the hospital in operation for the long term. Under its original proposal submitted to the commission, Avita had offered to lease the hospital for a period of five years, with the option to purchase for an undisclosed sum at the end of those five years.

Last Monday Avita announced an offer to purchase the hospital for $5 million. Although the “purchase” proposal lacks many crucial details, ECG has nevertheless been asked by the trustees to conduct a market analysis of the hospital to determine its value.

“Everyone concerned — the commission, the MCH Board and the public — needs to look at every aspect of the Avita proposal with its eyes wide open,” Drouhard said. “ECG will give us that look.”

The second action item was with regards to a letter submitted to the trustees by the commission in late August requesting a joint public meeting of the trustees and commission to review the Avita proposal. The board of trustees resolved not to consider participating in such a meeting until the litigation between the two boards over the removal of Drouhard has been resolved. That case is currently pending in the Ohio Supreme Court.

In the meantime, ECG Consultants will conduct its review of Avita and the proposal submitted to the commission.

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