WHEELING, W.Va. – Wheeling Hospital will become a full member of West Virginia University Health System following the execution of a letter of intent this week between the Catholic Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston and WVUHS.
Wheeling Hospital has been affiliated with the Diocese since 1850 after being founded by a the first Bishop and a local physician.
WVU has been managing Wheeling Hospital via a management services agreement since June 2019. WVU Medicine senior executive Douglass E. Harrison is the Chief Executive Officer in Wheeling.
Under the LOI, the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston will enter into a 50-year long-term lease of Wheeling Hospital and its related facilities.
The agreement also ensures Wheeling Hospital will maintain its Catholic identity as it becomes a full member of the WVU system.
Wheeling Hospital will now be part of a broad, integrated network of doctors, hospitals, clinics, and specialized institutes across West Virginia, Southwestern Pennsylvania, Western Maryland, and Ohio.
“We are honored that Bishop Mark Brennan trusts us to continue Wheeling Hospital’s legacy and tradition of caring for the Wheeling and Upper Ohio Valley communities,” said Albert L. Wright, Jr., President and CEO of WVU Health System. “As a full member of our health system, Wheeling Hospital will remain true to its mission, traditions, Catholic identity, and practice of medicine, while benefitting from being part of a larger, integrated network. Together we will offer excellent healthcare to the people of the greater Wheeling area.”
The transition will continue over the next several months.
“I believe that this strengthened partnership between the Diocese and the WVU Health System will ensure the long-term viability of Wheeling Hospital and enable it to provide even better care to the sick and injured who come through its doors,” said Most Rev. Mark E. Brennan, Bishop of the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston. “I am also pleased that the full Catholic identity of the Hospital will be maintained. The Catholic Church has centuries of experience and wisdom about how to conduct good health care. It is encouraging that WVUHS recognizes that reality. I am confident that Mr. Wright, Mr. Harrison and the entire WVU Medicine team will be faithful stewards of this cherished community asset and will operate it in a manner that honors and continues its ministry of providing critical healthcare services to our community in the name of Jesus Christ, the Divine Physician. I trust that this partnership will ensure that Wheeling Hospital thrives for generations to come.”
The Diocese and WVUHS expect the transition to be complete in March 2021.