LHC Group Locks Down Two New JVs, Acquires Hospice Provider

LHC Group Inc. (Nasdaq: LHCG) on Thursday announced the finalization of two joint venture agreements.

A home health, hospice and personal care services provider, Lafayette, Louisiana-based LHC Group currently operates in 35 states and Washington, D.C.

In one of the two new JV agreements, LHC Group will share ownership of SunCrest Home Health, a Gainesville, Georgia-based provider with Northeast Georgia Health System, a not-for-profit community health care organization.

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SunCrest Home Health will rebrand as Northeast Georgia Home Health.

“Our LHC Group family is genuinely excited to expand our services in the state of Georgia by joining forces with a respected, high-quality health care organization like Northeast Georgia Health System,” Keith Myers, LHC Group’s chairman and CEO, said in a press release. “With our combined talent, experience and resources, we will be able to bring effective value-based care to more patients in Gainesville and across the region, and do so in the safest and most preferred location – the comfort and familiarity of their home or place of residence.”

LHC Group also finalized its JV with Augusta, Georgia-based University Health Care System, first announced in August. Under the agreement, the two organizations will work to strengthen the home health and hospice services in that region.

The company estimates annual revenues of $8.3 million from its JV with University Health Care System.

Over the years, LHC Group has gained a reputation for being bullish when it comes to targeting JV opportunities. The company has become the preferred in-home health care partner for nearly 400 leading hospitals across the U.S.

The company has built a wide network of JV partnerships — viewing each deal as unique agreements, according to Myers.

“We now refer to ourselves as a ‘custom builder’ of in-home health care services partnerships, because no two of our hospital partnerships are exactly alike, in truth,” Myers recently said during a panel discussion at the 2020 Home Health Care News FUTURE conference.

In addition to its recent JV partnerships, LHC Group announced plans to acquire Santa Rita Hospice, an Aurora, Colorado-based end-of-life care provider. Under the deal, Santa Rita Hospice will operate under the name At Home Hospice.

The eight-county Santa Rita Hospice has been owned and operated by a local family, based in Denver.

“We see growth potential for hospice services in the Aurora market,” Myers said. “This transaction aligns with our strategy to co-locate home health and hospice services in markets where it makes sense — enabling us to reach even more patients and families with the quality care and service they deserve.”