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Cone Health, Randolph Health merger is off

Randolph Health, a 145-bed facility in Asheboro, N.C., and Greensboro, N.C.-based Cone Health no longer plan to merge.

The organizations revealed the news in a joint statement May 31, about 15 months after beginning their due diligence in exploring affiliation possibilities.

 "This was a difficult decision, but one that we believe to be in the best long-term interests of Cone Health," said Cone Health CEO Terry Akin. "After much consideration, we found that combining our organizations would require that many current and future Cone Health priorities and projects would need to be scaled back or put on hold. Cone Health's overall strategic commitments and our current competitive environment do not give us the latitude to move forward with Randolph health at the present time."

Steve Eblin, CEO of Randolph Health, expressed disappointment that the merger is off, but optimism about the future.

"While we regret we will not be fully integrated into Cone Health, they remain our management partner, and we remain committed to delivering quality healthcare to the communities we serve," he said.

Randolph Health began eyeing other potential merger partners after realizing the Cone Health deal was in jeopardy, Mr. Eblin said, and other organizations have expressed interest. He didn't identify those organizations

Cone Health and Randolph Health agreed to begin exploring affiliation possibilities in March 2017. Two months later, the organizations signed a letter of intent to partner.

Had the agreement gone through, it was anticipated that Cone Health would have committed more than $100 million toward improvements at Randolph Health.

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