Constrained to Stabilized: Protecting a Community’s Healthcare Future
THE CLIENT CHALLENGE
Facing insurmountable headwinds, embattled community hospital Randolph Health needed to find a buyer to save it from closure and to protect its community’s healthcare future. The system had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and was slated to be auctioned off, but it needed to secure a certain amount of state funding to be viable for purchase. Rallying community support was crucial in lobbying for government relief.
The health system actually had a preliminary offer going into its bankruptcy auction that set the floor for terms of a transaction. But any official deal close would be contingent on the hospital paying off massive debits. We also knew that any other prospective buyers would need to see that the community valued the system.
With those facts in mind, we developed a phased communications strategy to educate community members on the critical role Randolph Health played in maintaining local access to healthcare. This included launching a microsite, advertising on radio and social media, equipping spokespeople with talking points and activating community leaders to speak on Randolph’s behalf.
Our campaign approach leveraged internal and external pressure points to rally public support for the hospital and its application for a government grant.
We paired our community engagement strategy with a government awareness campaign, holding one-on-one meetings with local legislators to lobby for state funding.
The government awarded the hospital a grant for relief. Entering the bankruptcy auction, Randolph was nearly solvent. The deal closed in short order for six times the anticipated sale price. Hospital care for the community went on, uninterrupted, and continues today.
When confronting the possibility of closure, hospital leaders can use the power of relationships to save their business by:
Reaching out to their community
Educate and Relate
Connecting with their public officers
Crafting a Compelling Narrative
Tell a True Story
THE WIDER LANDSCAPE
Challenges to Securing Government Funding During Bankruptcy
Obtaining government relief in a compressed timeframe
Continuing daily operations while crafting and launching a campaign to generate awareness about the importance of the hospital to local healthcare
Running simultaneous strategies with different audiences (community members and local legislators) to gain support from each
Communicating benefits of the hospital despite its dire state
government funding and community support needed for a sale
the expected sale price when the deal closed
annual patients retained access to their care services
Are you contemplating a merger or acquisition to ensure you can continue serving your community now and in the future?