Trinitas agrees to deal to join RWJBarnabas Health

Medical center in Elizabeth will maintain Catholic identity; RWJBH to make significant upgrades

Barry Ostrowsky, left, and Gary Horan at the announcement. (File photo)

Trinitas Regional Medical Center is now a part of RWJBarnabas Health.

The two organizations entered into a definitive agreement Wednesday in which Trinitas and its affiliates will become a part of the RWJBH system.

Under the terms of the agreement, the role of Trinitas as a full-service, Catholic provider of acute health care services for the eastern Union County community will be enhanced. RWJBH has agreed to make significant investments in Trinitas and will expand the network of outpatient services currently provided by Trinitas.

Trinitas Regional Medical Center in Elizabeth. (File photo)

Trinitas, a 554-bed acute care teaching hospital located in Elizabeth, will retain its identity as a Catholic institution and will abide by the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services. The Sisters of Charity of Saint Elizabeth will continue to serve as the Catholic sponsor of Trinitas.

And, while RWJBH will become the corporate parent of Trinitas, the Trinitas board will continue to oversee the medical center’s day-to-day operations.

The agreement states, in part: “The parties have been in discussions for some time and share a common perspective and culture regarding the provision of high-quality, cost-effective services to their communities consistent with their respective missions and the need to move in the direction of population health management.”

Gary Horan, the longtime CEO of Trinitas, said the benefits of the agreement became clear over the past year.

“Throughout several years of discussion, including a very thorough due diligence process, I am more convinced than ever that our eventual move into the RWJBH system is an extremely positive and exciting development for our institution,” he said. “Our chief goal is to provide care for our community, and this partnership will give us the resources and opportunities to greatly enhance the already high level of care we provide.”

RWJBarnabas Health CEO Barry Ostrowsky agreed.

“Trinitas is a vital resource to the communities it serves, and we intend to greatly expand its excellent care to residents of new communities in northern and central New Jersey,” he said. “When joining together two entities with such similar missions and goals, the opportunities are enormous.”

The addition of Trinitas adds to RWJBH’s increasing reach in the state.

RWJBH has a service area of nine counties covering 5 million people. The system includes 11 acute care hospitals, three acute care children’s hospitals and a renowned pediatric rehabilitation hospital, among many other facilities. RWJBH has a partnership with Rutgers University, creating New Jersey’s largest academic health care system.

Trinitas provides over 400,000 patient contacts per year and renders care throughout the state of New Jersey. Trinitas is the result of a merger in the year 2000 between Elizabeth General Medical Center and St. Elizabeth Hospital.

Trinitas Chairman Victor Richel said he is pleased by the announcement.

“Our organization has been committed to serving the community to the best of its ability since 1879,” he said.  It’s wonderful to know that this commitment will continue far into the future as part of RWJBH.”

Horan agreed.

“We are increasingly confident that the path we are taking toward integration with RWJBH is the right one for our institution and our community,” he said.

Approvals will be necessary from state and federal authorities and the Catholic Church before the transaction is considered complete. That process could take up to one year.