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COLUMBIA HOSPITAL CORPORATION SIGNS LETTER OF INTENT TO CONSOLIDATE MIAMI BEACH COMMUNITY HOSPITAL AND MIAMI HEART INSTITUTE

 COLUMBIA HOSPITAL CORPORATION SIGNS LETTER OF INTENT TO CONSOLIDATE
 MIAMI BEACH COMMUNITY HOSPITAL AND MIAMI HEART INSTITUTE
 FORT WORTH, Texas, Oct. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Columbia Hospital Corporation (NASDAQ-NMS: CHOS) today announced it has executed a letter of intent to merge Miami Beach Community Hospital and Miami Heart Institute. The merger should be completed before year-end, with both parties having equal ownership in the combined operations.
 Miami Beach Community Hospital (formerly St. Francis Hospital) was acquired by Columbia in January 1992 and has 273 licensed beds. Miami Heart Institute is a 258 licensed bed not-for-profit facility also located in Miami Beach, Fla. Both hospitals will remain open and operate under the Miami Heart Institute name. After the merger, the not-for-profit corporation that presently owns Miami Heart Institute will continue to pursue its tax-exempt mission of cardiovascular and other medical research and education.
 "Merging the operations of these two hospitals greatly strengthens Columbia's healthcare network in the Miami market," said Richard L. Scott, Columbia's chairman and chief executive officer. "Miami Heart Institute is an internationally renowned provider of specialized cardiovascular services. These services complement the existing specialized services such as obstetrics and psychiatry that Columbia currently provides in Miami Beach."
 "Due to the geographical proximity of these hospitals, we can realize certain economies of scale by consolidating services and administrative functions," stated David T. Vandewater, Columbia's president and chief operating officer. "That translates into the highest quality health care delivery at the lowest cost."
 Columbia Hospital Corporation was recently ranked the fourth fastest growing publicly-owned company in the United States by Fortune Magazine. Columbia operates comprehensive health care networks in five markets: El Paso, Houston, and Corpus Christi, Texas, and Miami and Fort Myers, Fla. These networks provide comprehensive inpatient and outpatient health care services through the operation of general acute-care and specialty hospitals and a wide array of outpatient facilities.
 -0- 10/15/92
 /CONTACT: Stewart J. Campbell of Columbia, 817-870-5900; or Anthony J. Russo of Noonan/Russo Communications, 212-979-9180, for Columbia/
 (CHOS) CO: Columbia Hospital Corporation ST: Texas, Florida IN: HEA SU: TNM


GK-OS -- NY013 -- 0250 10/15/92 09:17 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 15, 1992
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