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Mass General abandons acquisition of New Hampshire hospital

Massachusetts General Hospital has pulled the plug on its plan to acquire a New Hampshire hospital and create a new Seacoast, N.H.-based nonprofit health system, according to the Union Leader.

Under the plan, which was announced in 2018, Boston-based Massachusetts General Hospital would acquire Exeter (N.H.) Health Resources. Then, Exeter would merge with Dover, N.H.-based Wentworth-Douglass Hospital, which Mass General acquired in 2018, to form a new nonprofit health system in New Hampshire. 

The new organization would then be part of the Massachusetts General umbrella. 

The proposal had been scrutinized by state and federal regulators, including the New Hampshire attorney general's office, which called the affiliation "unlawful" because it would decrease competition and increase prices, according to the report. 

Massachusetts General and Wentworth-Douglass said they are calling off the proposed merger, saying they have been unable to find an agreeable resolution to the opposition.

Officials at Massachusetts General said even if the plan made it through the federal review process they believed there wasn't a path forward with the state review.

"With the new year there’s always doors that open and doors that close. This is a door that closed for us, sadly," Mark Whitney, vice president of strategic planning at Exeter Health Resources, told the Union Leader. 

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