Blessing challenges transparency of QMG operation, filings

Blessing challenges QMG appeal
Blessing challenges QMG appeal(WGEM)
Published: Mar. 22, 2022 at 5:28 PM CDT
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QUINCY (WGEM) - Blessing Health System is challenging the transparency of two certificate of need applications filed by Quincy Medical Group: one for a 28-bed hospital at the Quincy Town Center and one for a three-bed birth center at 3301 Broadway.

Our news-gathering partners at The Herald-Whig report representatives of Blessing have argued that QMG has been “masking” the terms and corporate structure of an agreement with Duly Health and Care, formerly known as DuPage Medical Group, announced in September.

In a Feb. 7 letter to the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board, Blessing’s legal counsel said that Duly is financially backed and controlled by Ares Management, one of the nation’s largest health care private equity companies, thereby raising questions about the control a Chicago-based equity company would have over a QMG hospital.

QMG CEO Carol Brockmiller said her company has been in contact with HFSRB staff and legal counsel, who determined that Duly is not required to be a co-applicant for either proposal.

However, the newspaper reports that as part of the partnership, QMG was converted from a service corporation to a professional limited liability company.

QMG has maintained this change is the equivalent of a spouse changing their last name after getting married.

“The obstructionist tactics appear to be an attempt to keep QMG’s innovative projects from being fairly heard by the (Certificate of Need) Board and to prevent new entrants in the market,” Brockmiller said.

In May, state regulators voted 4-2 to issue an intent-to-deny ruling for the $61 million hospital proposal, citing concerns over an unnecessary duplication of services.

As part of the appeal process, QMG submitted additional materials in support of the project in July.

The Herald-Whig reports applications for the hospital and birth center projects will be considered during an HFSRB meeting on April 26.

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