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Erlanger looks to acquire first hospital outside of Tennessee

Chattanooga, Tenn.-based Erlanger Health System will take over Murphy (N.C.) Medical Center, pending approval by both organizations' boards, according to the Times Free Press.

Under the change of control agreement, Erlanger plans to assume control of the 25-bed critical access hospital and its imaging center by April 1. Erlanger will both manage and own Murphy Medical Center once the acquisition is finalized.

The acquisition of Murphy Medical Center would be Erlanger's first hospital acquisition outside of Tennessee. However, Erlanger is not unfamiliar with Murphy and its healthcare landscape. Last year, the health system stationed an air ambulance in the city.

Polk County, N.C.-based Copper Basin Medical Center also closed in 2017, which puts more pressure on Murphy Medical Center to provide regional support for healthcare, Kevin Spiegel, president and CEO of Erlanger, told Becker's.

"I could see Erlanger looking at other acquisitions that make sense for our region because we're the only regional, academic, tertiary medical center in the entire region," he said, according to the Times Free Press.

Editor's note: This article was updated Jan. 17 at 9:00 a.m. to provide additional information.

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