Lawsuit challenges Hardin County's sale of hospital to Baptist Health

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A lawsuit filed last week hopes to stop or at least stall the sale of Hardin Memorial Hospital to Baptist Health.

Hardin County Fiscal Court approved the more than $361.4 million sale at the beginning of May. However, it’s been met with resistance from a small group called the Com­mittee to Save Our Hos­pital ever since.

Last week, retired physician Larry Hall filed the lawsuit against Hardin County and Baptist Health claiming the approval of the sale by fiscal court was improper.

"Hardin Memorial Hospital would become kind of a referral into the Baptist system in Louisville," Hall said in May. "I think it was done behind the backs of the citizens. The fiscal court has been working on this for about two years and really didn't come out with the details or much of anything about it until about a month ago.”

The lawsuit claims that Hardin Fiscal Court members violated Kentucky statute that relates to “the sale and disposal of real and personal property belonging to the county.”

Baptist Health has managed Hardin Memorial since 1997 but, if completed, the deal would mark the first time the county hasn't owned it.

The hospital group had also previously said it will take on $37 million in debt-obligation as part of the agreement and no employees will be affected.

Prior to the lawsuit being filed, the sale was expected to be completed by Dec. 1.

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