Hughston doctors to buy Summit Hospital

Six surgeons from The Hughston Clinic, P.C. are buying Summit Hospital for $47.7 million, Hughston officials announced Monday.

The Hughston group and Ameris Health Systems LLC, which owns Summit, have signed a purchase agreement. The doctors will have a 90 percent stake in the Phenix City hospital while Ameris will retain 10 percent.

The Hughston Clinic doctors are Carlton Savory, James McGrory, Lyle Norwood, Patrick Fernicola, Thomas Bernard, Jr. and Glenn Terry.

"There's risk involved. There's no question about that," Savory said. "But we think from a strategic perspective, there's tremendous potential there."

Buying Summit is consistent with Hughston's plans for expansion, said Mark Baker, Hughston Clinic chief operating officer.

With the purchase of Summit Hospital, Hughston Clinic doctors will be able to perform surgeries and other procedures in an additional location.

The buyout is pending on customary closing conditions. It is expected to close in the first quarter of 2008.

Read more in Tuesday's Ledger-Enquirer.