Steward to sell off all of its hospitals: 5 details for surgeons

Practice Management

Dallas, Texas-based Steward Health Care is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and Medical Properties Trust will pour in millions of dollars to support operations at existing hospitals and clinics.

Here's what spine and orthopedic surgeons should know:

1. Steward will sell all of its 31 U.S. hospitals. It aims to keep them open and finalize the sales by the end of the summer.

2. Steward also secured terms that would provide $75 million in financing from Medical Properties Trust and up to another $225 million if certain conditions are met. However Medical Properties Trust has "not committed to providing additional funding" beyond the $75 million, the company said in its own news release.

3. In March, the system also revealed plans to sell its physician network to Optum, which is part of UnitedHealth Group. The delay in closing this transaction contributed to Steward's decision to file for bankruptcy. More than 110 orthopedic physicians are associated with Steward Health and its network, according to the system's website.

4. Medical Properties Trust saw a net loss of $663.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2023, primarily driven by Steward Health Care's financial situations. MPT's cash basis portfolio with the health system is $3.5 billion. The company is a publicly traded company and one of the largest hospital real estate groups.

5. Steward has been under scrutiny for its financial situation amid hospital closures and vendor complaints of unpaid bills. A Steward hospital in San Antonio closed in 2023 amid unpaid bills, and the system closed Stoughton, Mass.-based New England Sinai Hospital in April.

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