Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare (MLH) has entered into an agreement with Tenet Healthcare to purchase Saint Francis Hospitals, both the Bartlett and Memphis locations, along with physician practices associated with the hospitals and six MedPost urgent care centers.

“Consistent with our mission, the addition of Saint Francis hospitals will increase access to high quality healthcare, expand services and enhance the delivery of care to improve the overall health of the communities we serve,” said Michael Ugwueke, MLH president and CEO.

“We look forward to creating a more dynamic team of physicians, nurses and staff dedicated to delivering compassionate high-quality care to anyone who walks through our doors, regardless of their ability to pay.”

For people with chronic and complex illnesses, the transaction will expand clinical expertise across the system and encourage increased investment in medical technologies and innovative approaches to patient care.

The transaction will expedite the establishment of the Methodist Cancer Institute that will provide comprehensive treatment to cancer patients.

Additional benefits to patients and communities served by MLH and Saint Francis include: the ability to provide additional charity care; the establishment of new polices to create improved health outcomes; enhanced healthcare education programs for the community and increased philanthropic support.

“We have the highest respect for Methodist Le Bonheur, and we are pleased that our facilities will become part of this regional system,” said Sally Deitch, CEO of Saint Francis Healthcare.

“Like Saint Francis and Tenet, Methodist Le Bonheur promotes a culture of compassion backed by strong core values and a clear commitment to patient-centered care.”

“We believe this combination will provide the communities we serve with an even greater impact on care delivered.”

In September, current MLH employees saw a minimum wage increase from $10.08 to $13.50 hourly. That wage will increase to $15.00 per hour in 2020 for all MLH employees.

Currently, MLH provides community benefits totaling more than $226 million annually.

(To learn more about Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare, visit methodisthealth.org.)