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Board of Health Mulling Recommendations on Hospital Merger

The Louisville Board of Health is continuing its deliberations on the pending hospital merger.The board held a public forum with officials from University of Louisville Hospital, Jewish/St. Mary's Healthcare and Catholic Health Initiatives last month to clear up concerns that Catholic-led supervision would affect access and availability of care.Some procedures will be banned at U of L Hospital, but the final details of what will and will not be allowed haven't been determined. They'll be written into a merger contract that will require approval from the clergy and the state and federal governments.The Board of Health does not have veto power over the merger, but the panel plans to issue a set of recommendations to the governor that represent the public's voice.The board met last week to determine those recommendations. No decision was made, but board members continue to discuss their thoughts and are expected to release a statement on the merger soon. Final approval for the consolidation could come next month.