By Matthew Keck —

The University of Louisville has officially finalized the purchase of KentuckyOne Health’s assets as of Nov. 1. This ends the uncertain future of the struggling Jewish Hospital, now U of L Health–Jewish Hospital.

“This is an exciting and historic day for the University of Louisville,” said president Neeli Bendapudi. “This acquisition enables us to ensure access to quality health care for our entire community, and it strengthens our School of Medicine and our Health Sciences Center campus by allowing us to offer more training opportunities for our students and more research capacity for our faculty. It also saves thousands of jobs that could have been lost if any of these facilities closed.”

About 5,500 former KentuckyOne employees have joined U of L Health as part of this acquisition. Each hospital under this purchase has also been rebranded under the U of L Health name.

In the coming weeks the only visible differences from this purchase will be the new signs with each hospitals new name. The new names for each hospital were announced Oct. 28.

The one thing that was not finalized on Nov. 1 is the $50 million loan U of L is counting on from the state. This loan won’t be approved – if it is approved -until January 2020 by state lawmakers.

The process of this acquisition started back in January with U of L searching for a viable partner to make the purchase.

One of the reasons U of L backed out of buying the KentuckyOne assets earlier this year was due to funding. “Without a viable partner, we do not have the resources necessary to make the acquisition a reality,” Bendpaudi said earlier this year.

It was only when the state stepped in and promised a $50 million loan that U of L said they would purchase KentuckyOne’s assets.

U of L – pending the approval of the loan – is expecting half of it to be forgiven. They must meet certain criteria in terms of employment and service to underserved areas in order for the $25 million to be forgiven.

U of L will also be receiving funding from the Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence and the Jewish Hospital and St. Mary’s Foundation. The former is contributing $10 million and the latter $40 million to the deal.

“As we transfer the ownership and operations to U of L Health, I am optimistic that these facilities will continue their legacy of excellence and innovation led by the outstanding employees and providers,” said Larry Schumacher, senior vice president of operations, CommonSpirit Health Southeast Division.

File Photo // The Louisville Cardinal