Community Hospital Legacy Foundation Coming to Missoula, Mont.

December 17, 2014

Community Medical Center’s volunteer board of directors has agreed to invest proceeds from the sale of the hospital into a new foundation and a new fund to improve the health of western Montanans. Implementation of the plan, which has been submitted to the office of Attorney General Tim Fox, is subject to the Attorney General’s approval.

If approved, and after paying off Community’s outstanding debt and other obligations, Community’s board of directors will allocate most of the net proceeds received from the sale to create the new Community Hospital Legacy Foundation and a University of Montana Community Hospital Legacy Fund. The Community Hospital Legacy Foundation will start with an endowment of approximately $60 - 65 million, less a reserve fund to wind down operations, and will award grants to organizations and projects committed to improving health care and wellbeing in western Montana. The board has also allocated $10 million in sale proceeds to the University of Montana Foundation to create a Community Hospital Legacy Fund. The University will use the Fund to expand initiatives within the College of Health Professions and Biomedical Sciences. Just over a million will be withheld to extinguish any trailing liabilities of Community Medical Center.

The final sale price of approximately $74 million, which is subject to certain adjustments, was determined to be fair market value by CBIZ, the firm the Attorney General’s office tasked with determining the fair market value of the proposed transaction. Because Community is a nonprofit organization, the board was required to give the proceeds of the sale to an entity that will benefit health and wellbeing in western Montana. Community Board Chairman Scott Stearns said the new Foundation will make Missoula a better place to live and work for generations to come.

“Our board spent many hours discussing the best way to serve the people of western Montana within the scope of Community’s important mission,” Stearns said. “With input from this community, we agreed that creating this significant new foundation is our best option. I’m proud of this board for making a decision that will benefit western Montanans.”

“We're honored to have the opportunity to perpetuate and extend the mission of Community Medical Center to provide improved health care for the region,” said Reed Humphrey, dean of UM’s College of Health Professions and Biomedical Sciences. “This gift would provide for the necessary infrastructure to attract new students interested in all aspects of medicine and health, train new health professionals in a contemporary, interprofessional environment and continue our tradition of providing care to underserved populations and people with disabilities.” The Community Medical Center Board chose to sell the hospital in March in order to strengthen the facility’s future in the face of the changing health care industry. After much consideration, the board chose to partner with Billings Clinic, Montana’s largest hospital and a member of the Mayo Clinic Care Network, and RegionalCare Hospital Partners.