Valdosta Daily Times

October 25, 2012

SGMC acquires Berrien Hospital

Kay Harris
The Valdosta Daily Times

VALDOSTA — The Hospital Authority of Valdosta-Lowndes County signed the purchase agreement Wednesday to make Berrien County Hospital part of the South Georgia Medical Center family.

“We’ve been aware for some time that the owners of the Berrien hospital were interested in finding a buyer, and we thought this would be a perfect match for us,” said SGMC CEO Randy Sauls.

The transaction will be finalized in February 2013 following a 90-day due diligence period, said Sauls, who stated that the purchase price is $3.9 million. He added that the purchase is being funded from SGMC’s pending agreement to sell Greenleaf Center to Acadia Healthcare, which should be final in December of this year.

The owners of the Berrien County hospital, Chuck Jabaley and Frederick Lester, will retain ownership of the Berrien Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center, which will continue working closely with the hospital to serve its patients’ needs, said Sauls.

The current CEO/CFO of Berrien County, Stephanie Fletcher, will continue in that role until closing, when she will retain the position of CFO.

The Berrien County Hospital in Nashville opened its doors in 1965. It is currently licensed for 51 acute-care beds and 12 geriatric/psychiatric beds, with 120 employees.

The emergency room treats approximately 6,000 patients annually.

The agreement also includes a primary-care practice and an urgent-care walk-in clinic, which opened in March 2012 and provides services to nearly 30 patients per day, according to SGMC.

The Hospital Authority umbrella of care now covers SGMC, Smith Northview Hospital, Dasher Memorial Heart Center, Pearlman Cancer Center, Diabetes Management Center, Imaging Center, Health Care South, Hospice of South Georgia, Langdale Hospice House, Langdale Place, Youth Care, and affiliates Louis Smith Memorial and Lakeland Villa Convalescent Center in Lakeland, and Clinch Memorial in Homerville.