Amsterdam Memorial and St. Mary's Hospital Sign Letter of by Gallows

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									Press Release/Statement                     August 24, 2007

St. Mary’s Hospital at Amsterdam            Amsterdam Memorial
427 Guy Park Ave.                           4988 State Hwy 30
Amsterdam, NY 12010                         Amsterdam, NY 12010
518-841-7162                                518-841-3602
Contact: Jerri Cortese                      Contact: Rana Huber


     Amsterdam Memorial and St. Mary’s Hospital Sign Letter of Intent

(Amsterdam, New York) (August 24, 2007) Amsterdam Memorial Healthcare
(AMH) and St. Mary’s Hospital at Amsterdam (SMH) announced that they have
signed a Letter of Intent to merge their respective hospitals into one unified
entity.

       While legally non-binding, the Letter of Intent provides a joint vision of a
future where both hospitals will come together as a stronger health care provider
with a configuration of services that are both sustainable and needed by the
community.

       This announcement follows the February 2007 notification that talks
between the two hospitals were beginning, and in June 2007 when a six-month
extension was signed to the original 120-day discovery process.

        A Joint Steering Committee consisting of board members, hospital
administration and medical staff from each hospital has been meeting since
April 2007 in an effort to increase the quality, efficiency and effectiveness of
health care services in the region. The Department of Health has been actively
involved since the initial discussions.

      The Letter of Intent was endorsed by the Joint Steering Committee and
received unanimous approval by both boards on Tuesday, August 21.

       According to Donald W. Massey, President and CEO of AMH, “The letter of
intent expresses both parties' commitment to take the process to the next level.
AMH and SMH will now continue to work to ensure the needs of both parties and
the community are met.”

                                   -more-
Letter of Intent
Add One


        The proposed transaction is subject to customary conditions to be satisfied
prior to completion, including regulatory approval from the Department of
Health, as well as receiving a commitment from New York State to help fund
substantial costs associated with the transaction. Based, in part, on this
commitment from the state, the parties would expect to enter into final
agreement respecting the transaction around March 31, 2008.

      The talks have garnered national attention, most notably being featured
on the cover of the July 16, 2007 edition of Modern Healthcare.

      The expanded organization, under the auspices of St. Mary’s Hospital,
would be the eighth largest hospital in the Capital District market. The operating
budget for the merged facility would be approximately $120 million, with
approximately 1,600 full and part-time staff, and 342 licensed beds.

       Victor Giulianelli, President and CEO of SMH, said, "This process has
involved a strong leadership commitment from both Boards and their ability to
look at what is best for our community. By building on the strengths of both
hospitals, we will continue to increase the quality, stability and efficiency of
healthcare in our region.”

      One important component of this transaction will be to configure services
in a manner that increases quality, stability, and efficiency. Toward that end, the
two hospitals preliminarily have agreed to the following:

   •   Consolidate Outpatient Imaging at AMH
   •   Consolidate Lab at SMH with appropriate lab support at Urgent Care at
       AMH
   •   Consolidate General Anesthesia related services at SMH
   •   Consolidate Comprehensive Outpatient Rehabilitation Services at AMH
   •   Consolidate Urgent Care and Family Health Services at AMH
   •   Continue the Diabetes Center, the Wilkinson Residential Healthcare
       Facility, the Swing Bed and Rehabilitation Unit at AMH
   •   Other services currently remain under discussion

      SMH will seek to honor the many years of service given by AMH to the
community through the retention of respected names of areas such as The Cuda
Board Room, Blase Park, The Pipito Outpatient Center, The Burgess Conference
Room and the Wilkinson Residential Health Care Facility. The AMH campus
would carry the name “St. Mary’s Hospital – Amsterdam Memorial Campus.”

                                  -more-
Letter of Intent
Add Two/Final


      Additionally, the St. Mary’s Board of Directors will expand to add members
currently serving on the Amsterdam Memorial Board.

      Hospital officials are working closely to determine all of the needs of the
new enterprise, including staffing, equipment and facility requirements. Details
have yet to be determined.

        According to Giulianelli, “There are many items to be decided. The
actions we are considering are integral to emerging as a strong healthcare
entity for the future, for our patients, our staff, our medical staff and the ongoing
needs of our community.”

       While these talks were not required by the Berger Commission, both
hospitals want to capitalize on the momentum created by the Commission that
encourages health care organizations to work more closely together to better
meet the needs of their community.

      According to hospital officials, this newly fostered relationship between
the two organizations mirrors national and state efforts to redefine health care to
ensure that the changing needs of patients are best served while the
management of the financial cost of health care is addressed.


       St. Mary's Hospital at Amsterdam is a member of Ascension Health
(www.ascensionhealth.org). Ascension Health is the nation’s largest Catholic
and nonprofit health system with more than 105,000 associates serving in 20
states and the District of Columbia.

                                         ###
       Press Release/Statement Addendum             August 24, 2007

       St. Mary’s Hospital at Amsterdam             Amsterdam Memorial
       427 Guy Park Ave.                            4988 State Hwy 30
       Amsterdam, NY 12010                          Amsterdam, NY 12010
       518-841-7162                                 518-841-3602
       Contact: Jerri Cortese                       Contact: Rana Huber




             Amsterdam Memorial and St. Mary’s Hospital Sign Letter of Intent

                                    ADDENDUM TO PRESS STATEMENT

Timeline:

      In the spring of 2002, AMH voluntarily modified its services, with NYS Department of Health
                approval, by converting the Emergency Department into an Urgent Care Center,
                stopping all acute medical/surgical admissions and maintaining support for all
                other existing services.

       In 2003, St. Mary’s Hospital, recognizing the need for expanded space and services,
               initiated a major renovation and expansion project. The project was completed
               in 2006, adding a Fast Track service as well as 4 patient treatment areas to the
               existing Emergency Department. Inpatient Surgery, Ambulatory Surgery, Medical
               Imaging and Laboratory Services were also expanded to meet community need.

       In a 2004 Governor’s report, AMH was cited as a positive example of restructuring health
               care delivery. This report led to the formation of the Commission on Health Care
               Facilities in the 21st Century - a broad based panel which has been examining
               the needs and capacities of the state-wide health care system.

      In January 2006, as part of AMH’s growth plan, AMH re-opened a limited in-patient bed
              program. This “Transitional Care Inpatient Program” has shown consistent patient
              growth for the hospital and was done with the support of St. Mary’s.

      In 2006, AMH and SMH developed a joint Medical Staff development recruitment
                committee to strengthen the delivery of health care in our community. The
                purpose of the committee was to identify medical staff that will be needed in the
                future to serve the healthcare needs of the community.


                                                 -more-
In November 2006, the Commission on Healthcare Facilities for the 21st Century (Berger
        Commission) issued its long awaited report. The Commission stated the following
        on page 6 of the Northern Region appendix, “As early as 1997…it was clear that
        the region was no longer able to sustain three community hospitals. That situation
        was relieved when, in the same year, Amsterdam Memorial determined that
        continued competition with St. Mary’s was not sustainable. It converted its
        emergency department to a part-time urgent care center, closed its six-bed
        intensive care unit, and transformed its 24 medical/surgical beds into a swing-bed
        unit offering sub-acute care. Amsterdam Memorial now focuses on providing
        services that complement those offered at St. Mary’s. As a result, Amsterdam
        Memorial, St. Mary’s and Nathan Littauer are on reasonable financial footing,
        and the N-RAC doesn’t see the opportunity or need, to right-size the acute care
        delivery system in Montgomery and Fulton Counties.”

Both Amsterdam Memorial Healthcare and St. Mary’s Hospital seek to capitalize on the
        momentum created by the Commission that encourages health care
       organizations to work more closely together to better meet the needs of our
       community.

This announcement follows the February 2007 notification that talks between the two
         hospitals were beginning, and in June 2007 when a 6-month extension was signed
         to the original 120-day discovery process.



 Incorporated in 1888, Amsterdam Memorial Healthcare was Montgomery County’s first
 hospital. Today, with approximately 475 full and part-time employees, it is one of the
 area’s largest employers. AMH offers a wide range of inpatient, outpatient and specialty
 health care services: adult day care; colonoscopies and other endoscopic procedures;
 diabetes and nutrition counseling; diagnostic testing for heart, lung and vein function;
 family health care; laboratory services; medical imaging services; occupational
 medicine, overnight and outpatient surgery; inpatient and outpatient physical,
 occupational and speech therapy; sports medicine; sleep disorder studies; nursing home
 care; wound healing; and urgent care.

 Founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet in 1903, St. Mary’s Hospital at
 Amsterdam is dedicated to providing health care services that address the spiritual and
 social needs of our patients as well as their physical necessities. St. Mary’s Hospital at
 Amsterdam is the largest acute care hospital in the region with a range of services
 designed to fulfill the total health care needs of the community while being the lowest
 cost provider and regardless of one’s ability to pay. More than a hospital, St. Mary’s is a
 health care system with four primary care centers and a full range of behavioral health
 services located for maximum accessibility throughout two counties. St. Mary's Hospital
 at Amsterdam is a member of Ascension Health (www.ascensionhealth.org). Consistent
 with its mission to serve all people with special attention to those who are poor and
 vulnerable, Ascension Health is an innovative leader in transforming healthcare through
 patient-centered, holistic are of the highest clinical quality. Ascension Health is the
 nation’s largest Catholic and nonprofit health system with more than 105,000 associates
 serving in 20 states and the District of Columbia.

								
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