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Prime Healthcare Services Acquires Centinela Hospital Medical Center
Date:10/31/2007

Hospital network pledges to expand ER, continue providing all current

services, invest $20 million in facility improvements and maintain

commitment to poor and uninsured

INGLEWOOD, Calif., Oct. 31 /PRNewswire/ -- Prime Healthcare Services, Inc. (PHS), the owner and operator of eight acute care hospitals in Southern California, announced today that Prime Healthcare Centinela, one of its subsidiaries, has acquired Centinela Hospital Medical Center (CHMC), a 369-bed full-service acute care facility in Inglewood, California, from Centinela Freeman HealthSystems Holdings, Inc.

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Representatives for both PHS and CHMC said the acquisition will bring much-needed long-term financial stability to the hospital and assure that its doors remain open and all of its services remain available to the people of Inglewood and other local communities.

PHS has pledged to expand the Emergency Department to relieve overcrowding, to maintain all currently-offered services and to invest $20 million in new infrastructure improvements over the next year. It will also keep its ongoing commitment to serving the poor and uninsured.

"We look forward to working with Centinela's medical staff and employees, as well as community leaders, to maintain this hospital's long and storied tradition of medical excellence and of providing quality healthcare services to patients regardless of economic status," said Prem Reddy, MD, FACC, FCCP, Chairman of the Board of PHS.

"We are 100-percent committed to delivering a financial shot-in-the-arm to this hospital and providing the very best, most compassionate health care to the people of this community," said Reddy.

CHMC is a premier and critical hospital serving Inglewood and the greater Los Angeles communities. Recognized nationally and internationally for its work in the area of orthopedic medicine, it is the official hospital for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Lakers, Clippers, Sparks, Galaxy and Avengers sports teams and the home of the renowned Tommy Lasorda Heart Institute.

Unfortunately, CHMC has been experiencing financial difficulties over the past few years. With the recent closure of Martin Luther King Jr. - Harbor Hospital, the Emergency Department has seen an increase in indigent and uninsured patients. In addition to the growing volume of uncompensated care, the ever-increasing costs of healthcare delivery and decreasing reimbursements have resulted in financial stress for the hospital.

"This sale of Centinela Hospital to Prime Healthcare Services is designed to meet the long-term needs of our patients and employees by stabilizing the delivery of health care services in Inglewood and the surrounding communities," said Von Crockett, President and CEO of CFHS. "This is very good news indeed both for this facility and for the many people we serve."

Prime Healthcare Services has become a respected industry leader by acquiring financially distressed and/or failing hospitals and strengthening operations through proven operational protocols: adequate capital infusion, physician driven and patient focused clinical pathways, and outcome oriented management protocols.

As is the case in all eight of the hospitals it has acquired throughout Southern California, PHS maintains open emergency departments that rarely, if ever, go on saturation/bypass.

What's more, PHS' hospitals offer more charity care compared to other not-for-profit and for-profit competitors. Its hospitals are award-winning facilities which consistently rank near the top of respected hospital quality assurance and accreditation agencies.

Prime Healthcare Services will operate CHMC as an acute-care facility with all services presently provided including Emergency Department services, Medical/Surgical services, Obstetric services and specialty-care services such as orthopedic/sports medicine and cardiovascular services operated as Centers of Excellence.

Under the management of PHS, it is anticipated that emergency services will be improved with increased efficiencies. Therefore, the Emergency Department will be open all the time for the patients of the catchment area, as well as for ambulance transfers from outside the catchment area that have been affected by the recent closure of Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital.

Current employees will be retained under the new management. The current medical staff will continue to operate as an independent and autonomous entity with its elected leadership. PHS has assumed the existing contracts of health plans and physicians. CHMC will also continue its contracts with Medicare, Medi-Cal and the County of Los Angeles.

CFHS will continue to operate the Marina campus hospital, a 76-bed acute care facility in Marina Del Rey.

About Prime Healthcare Services

Prime Healthcare Services is a progressive, innovative and rapidly-expanding hospital management company in Southern California. With over 5,000 employees, PHS currently owns and operates nine acute care facilities: Desert Valley Hospital in Victorville (83-beds), Centinela Hospital Medical Center (369-beds) in Inglewood, Chino Valley Medical Center in Chino (126-beds), Sherman Oaks Hospital and the Grossman Burn Center in Sherman Oaks (153-beds), Montclair Hospital Medical Center in Montclair (102-beds), Huntington Beach Hospital in Huntington Beach (141-beds), La Palma Intercommunity Hospital in La Palma (131-beds), West Anaheim Medical Center in Anaheim (219-beds) and Paradise Valley Hospital in San Diego (301-beds), California. The PHS' mission is to provide comprehensive quality healthcare in a compassionate, convenient and cost-effective manner. For more information, visit http://www.primehealthcare.com


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SOURCE Prime Healthcare Services, Inc.
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