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National Surgical Hospitals Acquires Majority Share of Houston-Area Surgery Center
Date:10/10/2007

CHICAGO, Oct. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- National Surgical Hospitals (NSH), a leading owner and operator of surgical hospitals and surgery centers, announced that it has acquired a majority stake in Sterling Ridge Surgery Center, a freestanding multi-specialty ambulatory surgical center (ASC) in The Woodlands, Texas.

NSH acquired its share of the fully accredited, orthopedic-focused facility from the ASC's nine physicians. It intends to convert the facility into a surgical hospital in The Woodlands area beginning in the fourth quarter of 2007.

"Sterling Ridge is a fast-growing facility that opened in January 2005 and expects to handle about 3,000 cases this year," said Dr. Bill Hayes, a founding partner. It has recently added four surgeons and anticipates adding several more surgeons as a result of NSH's acquisition.

"Our relationship with NSH marks an important milestone for the center, our physicians, and our patients," Dr. Hayes said. "NSH's involvement will expedite our continued growth and service to the patients of The Woodlands community and the North Houston metropolitan area."

"We are excited to be associated with such a dynamic group of physician-partners and a thriving facility," said John G. Rex-Waller, chief executive officer for NSH. "Sterling Ridge has great potential for strong growth, and the commitment of the physicians to build a hospital to attract new patients and other physicians is impressive."

"This is a tremendous opportunity for NSH to enter the Houston market and to expand the company's presence in Texas," Rex-Waller added. NSH operates highly successful hospitals in San Antonio, El Paso, Hurst and Bryan. Sterling Ridge will be the company's third ASC-to-hospital conversion in the state.

About National Surgical Hospitals

National Surgical Hospitals owns, operates, and develops surgical hospitals and surgery centers in partnership with local physicians. It operates 11 surgical hospitals in Arizona, Idaho, Michigan, New Mexico, North Carolina, Texas, Utah, and Wisconsin, with additional facilities scheduled to open in the next 12 months in California, Colorado, and Wyoming. It also operates seven orthopedic-focused surgery centers in Arizona, California, Michigan, and Texas. More information about NSH's innovative way to deliver high-quality surgical care is available at http://www.nshinc.com.


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