American Physician Partners' looming closure leaves hospitals scrambling

American Physician Partners' planned closure on July 31 has left more than 150 hospitals and health systems with just two weeks to secure new emergency or hospital medicine services. 

The Brentwood, Tenn.-based medical staffing company confirmed the closure to Bloomberg on July 17, citing ongoing financial challenges. APP provided emergency medicine and hospital medicine management services to more than 150 healthcare organizations in 18 states, according to its website.

Harold Naramore, MD, CEO of Blount Memorial Hospital in Maryville, Tenn., said the abrupt closure has left him scrambling to secure new providers to run the emergency department by Aug. 1. He interviewed at least two dozen companies in the week following the news, ultimately selecting TeamHealth to take over emergency services, according to NBC affiliate WBIR.

The hospital typically allocates about 60 days to transition emergency department providers. Under the current circumstances, TeamHealth will have just 13 days.

"They have committed to do this as seamlessly as possible. It certainly will have moments in the transition," Dr. Naramore told WBIR. "I believe they're very capable of it. We look forward to partnering with them."

Facing a similar situation, Houston Methodist quickly transitioned its APP contracts to U.S. Acute Care Solutions on July 19, according to MedPage Today

The American College of Emergency Physicians said it is "deeply concerned" about potential care disruptions from APP's closure. 

"While events are still unfolding, we call upon American Physician Partners to responsibly transition operations and prioritize continuity of ED staffing and quality of patient care," the organization tweeted July 18. 

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