Providence, R.I.–December 17, 2018–Today, Partners HealthCare and Brigham Health filed an application with the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) and Rhode Island Attorney General (RIAG), in accordance with the Rhode Island Hospital Conversion Act, seeking approval of Brigham Health’s planned acquisition of Care New England (CNE). Partners HealthCare will also later this week file a Notice of Material Change with the Massachusetts Health Policy Commission. The Federal Trade Commission recently announced that it has decided not to challenge the acquisition.

The affiliation calls for CNE to become part of Brigham Health, the Partners-owned organization that operates Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital and other entities. It is built on a shared commitment to providing the highest quality local care, physician training and biomedical innovation to Rhode Island. Importantly, it will also stabilize CNE and enable the financially-distressed system to expand its primary care and complex care resources and address much-needed capital improvements.

"This relationship will extend our existing affiliations across the Care New England system, bringing new resources to support patient care and physician training and expanding access to research through clinical trials," said Elizabeth G. Nabel, MD, President of Brigham Health. "We’re committed to investing in Rhode Island’s healthcare economy by becoming active members of the local business community."

"Rhode Islanders will benefit greatly from the collaboration of these two health systems," said Care New England President and CEO James E. Fanale, MD. "Our relationship with Brigham Health will enhance the training of physicians and inspire new research. At the same time, it strengthens our commitment to preserving access and quality of care for all Rhode Islanders."

In addition, CNE, Partners, and Brigham Health finalized an agreement with Brown establishing the university’s Warren Alpert Medical School as the primary academic research and teaching institution of record for the affiliation. Further, Brown’s President will join the CNE Board of Directors as a voting member, and the dean of the Warren Alpert Medical School will be an ex officio member of academic and research subcommittees of that board.

Brown has a longstanding academic medical affiliation with CNE, which is home to Brown’s programs in obstetrics and gynecology and neonatology (at Women & Infants Hospital); in psychiatry (at Butler Hospital); and in family medicine (at Kent Hospital). This new relationship will sustain medical training for healthcare providers and support for biomedical research and innovation that keeps leading physicians in the state.
 
"Together, we will be even better positioned to prepare our future physicians for the rapidly changing world of healthcare and medical innovation," Brown President Christina Paxson said. "We will build on our ability to compete for biomedical research grants that will guide the future of medicine and inject new investment and vibrancy into the Rhode Island economy."

Following Brigham Health’s acquisition of CNE, the three partners will deepen their collaboration through this clinical, medical education and biomedical research affiliation. The governance will support the shared commitment of Partners, Brigham Health, CNE and Brown to help ensure high-quality, affordable care for Rhode Island.

Other objectives of the new academic collaboration include maintaining and enhancing the quality of medical education for medical students at existing and future CNE clinical facilities; evaluating ways to strengthen the relationship between CNE physicians and physicians in Brown-affiliated faculty practice groups; establishing effective and expanded approaches to population health management; and exploring the potential for a new medical research institute in Providence.

The application filed today with the state is public and will be available on the RIDOH website. The RIDOH previously granted expedited review status of the application. Once the application is deemed complete, RIDOH and RIAG have 90 days from that date to issue their determinations.