As a retired government affairs executive for hospitals who was involved in several hospital merger initiatives, I was amused to read about a self-described grass-roots coalition opposing the merger of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Lahey Health (“Lobbying firm’s in hospital fight, too,” Business, Dec. 19). The group’s opposition strategy throws out baseless allegations and deceptive messages as a way to deflect from the clear merits of this proposed merger. For the coalition to suggest that this deal could result in hospital closures and service cuts and harm low-income people is fearmongering.
Hospitals against the merger are opposing this because they fear increased competition in their marketplace. Yet competition is the name of the game in today’s rough-and-tumble health care delivery system. That’s why these hospitals are merging.