Meadowlands Hospital sale one step closer to reality

The State Health Planning Board approved the sale of the troubled Meadowlands Hospital Medical Center to the owner of two surgical centers in North Jersey, pending approval of the Department of Health’s acting commissioner, Christopher Rinn.

The applicant, Yan Moshe, is putting up $12.2 million to purchase the Secaucus hospital through $5 million in available funds and a $7.2 million loan from the current hospital owners.

Moshe has plans to improve the facility and its relationships in the surrounding regions, including the American Dream project.

Moshe “has negotiated a non-irrevocable Letter of Intent with the developers of the American Dream Mall complex to provide certain health care services as well as providing a network for the employees of the retail stores that will occupy the mall,” according to the board’s review of the application.

In addition, Moshe has said he will increase primary care physicians, keep all existing management and develop in-network relationships with insurers.

But the board shared some concerns in its Nov. 21 decision.

“The department notes that (the existing owner) has not submitted audited annual financial statements for the last three years, so the department has limited information to assess the loan,” according to the decision.

In addition, Moshe has committed up to $3 million of improvements within the first 60 months of ownership.

At a public hearing in October, more than a dozen individuals showed up, a majority of which supported the sale, citing a need for an acute care hospital in the area.

But records show the hospital has had a declining occupancy of its licensed beds, which Moshe has said in his application will be reversed by the improvements.

Despite some of the concerns, the recommendation has been to approve the sale.

“While staff have concerns with the consistent low utilization at the hospital and with the fact that the applicant is borrowing a significant amount of the purchase price from the current owner, based on the documentation of compliance with regulatory and statutory criteria, department staff recommends approving the transfer of ownership,” the decision read.