Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health and GraniteOne Health will merge, nine months after signing a letter of intent.
The deal represents the consolidation of New Hampshire's two largest hospitals, including its only academic medical center.
Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health and GraniteOne will have a combined eight hospitals and nearly $3 billion in revenue.
Southern New England has been the site of many hospital mergers in recent years, particularly given the dealmaking undertaken by Partners HealthCare, primarily in Massachusetts. By contrast, the more rural portion of the region north of Boston has been significantly less active, until this week.
Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health and GraniteOne Health made good on the letter of intent they signed in January, and said this week they would merge. The combined entity will be known as Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health GraniteOne. They will operate eight hospitals throughout the Granite State, serving most of its population areas. All will keep their current names. GraniteOne’s 330-bed Catholic Medical Center in Manchester, N.H., the largest hospital in the deal, will retain its religious mission.
"Our board unanimously approved this agreement because we truly believe it is a positive and transformative step for the people of New Hampshire and our respective organizations,” Vincent Conti, MHA, Chair of the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health board of trustees, said in a statement.
The deal will still require the approval of the New Hampshire Attorney General and the Federal Trade Commission. Given the scope of the deal — the combined entity would control nearly a quarter of the hospitals in New Hampshire — it is uncertain how AG Gordon MacDonald, a Republican, will rule.
Partners HealthCare, which owns Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, has had some recent stumbles in the M&A arena after years of steady consolidation. A three-way merger involving Lifespan and Care New England —which would have allowed Partners to enter Rhode Island — began crumbling in late 2018 when Lifespan pulled out. The deal fell apart earlier this year.
Meanwhile, last year’s merger between Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Lahey Health, intended to keep up with Partners’ size, was approved by regulators but included conditions such as price caps and mandatory participation in Massachusetts’ Medicaid program.