Floyd Medical Center

Floyd Medical Center

As part of the proposed merger between Floyd Healthcare Management Inc. and North Carolina-based Atrium, the county government would be able to step away from guaranteeing over $120 million in bonded debt.

The Floyd Healthcare Management board — the company that operates Floyd Medical Center — signed a letter of intent on Nov. 5. This deal, totaling around $650 million, is easily one of the largest business deals in Floyd County.

In addition to investing that large sum over an 11-year period, Atrium has also agreed to take on the hospital system’s approximately $180 million operating debt.

Of that figure, Floyd County backed $127.5 million in bonds for expansion and upgrades to the hospital. As of June 30, the remaining bonded amount was just over $120 million.

“It’s a win-win for the citizens of Floyd County,” Floyd County Commission Chairman Scotty Hancock said Friday afternoon.

That’s just one of the ways this proposed merger would affect Floyd County.

The county will retain one seat on the 18-member Floyd Healthcare Management as well as on the seven-person Hospital Authority of Floyd County board.

“Several years ago the county was promised at least one seat on the board,” Hancock said.

And that promise still stands. However, it will lose a second seat on the Floyd Healthcare Management Inc. board. That second seat came about as part of a 2003 deal when the county originally agreed to back bonds by Floyd Medical Center. Once the debt is no longer guaranteed by the county government, they are no longer guaranteed that second seat at the table.

As part of the merger, the Floyd Healthcare Management board will get two new members from Atrium.

Currently County Commissioners Wright Bagby and Rhonda Wallace sit on the Floyd Healthcare Management Inc. board.

Bagby also serves on the Hospital Authority of Floyd County board. The property and facility of Floyd Medical Center is owned by the Hospital Authority of Floyd County. The hospital authority leases that property to Floyd Healthcare Management.

The entire process could take up to a year before it is completed, FMC President and CEO Kurt Stuenkel said earlier this week. Once negotiations are over, the deal will be subject to state approval.

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