Health Council Sets Further Conditions on BIDMC-Lahey Deal

The Massachusetts Public Health Council last week weighed in on the proposed Beth Israel Deaconess-Lahey merger, imposing a series of conditions on the deal before it can go forward.  The conditions call on the proposed entity – Beth Israel Lahey Health – to, among other things, attempt to reduce inpatient volume at its academic medical centers and expand the percentage of MassHealth in its payer mix.  The Public Health Council wants to ensure that any Beth Israel Lahey Health provider authorized to participate in MassHealth, has, in fact, applied to participate in the state program.

Beth Israel Deaconess CEO Kevin Tabb, M.D., who will lead the new system, was quoted in the State House News Service as saying of the council’s conditions: “Yes, this is something that we can and must do, but it is approaching the outer limits of what's doable, and I need to further remind people that while I agree completely with many of the concerns that have been raised about the woes of healthcare in Massachusetts and in this country, we can't solve all of that on the backs of this single transaction.”  Attorney General Maura Healey’s office is currently reviewing the proposed deal.