Steward Health Care System and Mercy Health System of Portland, Maine, have terminated a letter of intent signed last August under which Boston-based Steward would have purchased the financially struggling Catholic hospital group in its first out-of-state acquisition. In a terse statement issued late Friday afternoon, Steward said it had “entered into a period of exclusive negotiations but were unable to come to a definitive agreement” with Mercy Health. “As a result,” the Steward statement said, “the letter of intent is terminated.”
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