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Sentara Cancels Plans to Merge With N.C. Hospital System

Sentara Healthcare has opened three drive-thru testing locations in Hampton Roads, including one at the Williamsburg Regional Medical Center.(WYDaily/ courtesy of Sentara)(WYDaily/ courtesy of Sentara)
Sentara Healthcare announced in a press release that it would not merge with Cone Healthcare. (WYDaily/ Courtesy of Sentara Healthcare)

NORFOLK — After nine months of negotiations, Sentara Healthcare officials have decided against going through with a merger to Cone Health, a Greensboro, N.C. based healthcare system, according to a press release from Sentara.

Citing that the two not-for-profits could better serve their respective publics on their own, executives from both sides were insistent in their comments about the failed partnership.

“I am confident that this mutual decision will not alter either organization’s ongoing commitment to meet the needs of our respective communities. Sentara and Cone Health remain aligned and in agreement that our first priority is to those we serve, and we believe this will be better done as independent organizations,“ Howard P. Kern, Sentara President and CEO said in a press release. “I have no doubt that Cone Health will remain a top tier health system and will continue to pursue new and innovative ways to provide value for North Carolinians for years to come.”

The two regional healthcare systems announced plans for the merger in August of 2020, and together would have run 17 hospitals through out North Carolina and Southeastern Virginia.

Sentara Healthcare employs more than 33,000 people at hundreds of sites in Hampton Roads and northeast North Carolina. Sentara has been serving the Williamsburg area since it merged with the Williamsburg Community Hospital in 2002. In 2006 Sentara opened the 145 bed Williamsburg Regional Medical Center off of Mooretown Road.

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