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CoxHealth, above, completes its purchase of Barton County Memorial Hospital, below.
CoxHealth, above, completes its purchase of Barton County Memorial Hospital, below.

CoxHealth starts year with addition of 6th hospital

Posted online

CoxHealth yesterday finalized its purchase of Barton County Memorial Hospital in Lamar.

With the acquisition for undisclosed terms, CoxHealth adds its sixth hospital, located 77 miles northwest of Springfield, according to a news release.

“By combining our strengths, we will work to expand services, find new efficiencies and serve the community in new ways that wouldn’t be possible for a stand-alone hospital,” CoxHealth President and CEO Steve Edwards said in the release.

The Springfield-based health care provider adds 25 beds at what’s now called Cox Barton County Hospital. The employees are guaranteed to retain their positions for at least one year, though Edwards said there are no plans to reduce staffing levels in Lamar.

“The way health care works today made it extremely challenging for a single hospital to continue operating the way most have for years,” said Wendy Duvall, CEO of Cox Barton County Hospital, in the release. “This partnership is a great thing for us, as it means critical access care will still be available locally.” 

With the Barton County purchase, CoxHealth finished its first acquisition since the 2013 buyout of Skaggs Regional Medical Center in Branson. Last year, CoxHealth and Bolivar’s Citizens Memorial Healthcare called off a $120 million deal.

CoxHealth’s other acquisitions were Cox Monett Hospital, formerly St. Vincent Hospital, in 1993, and Meyer Orthopedic & Rehabilitation Hospital, formerly the Springfield locations of Columbia HCA, in 1998, according to the release.

In addition to Barton County Hospital, CoxHealth operates three hospitals in Springfield, one in Branson and one in Monett, according to its website.

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