By Andy Miller, Georgia Health News

Piedmont Hospital, which is located in Buckhead on Peachtree Road, has purchased a Conyers hospital and brought it into the Piedmont Healthcare system.

Rockdale Medical Center, about 25 miles east of Atlanta, has officially become the eighth hospital in the Piedmont Healthcare system.

The hospital — in Conyers, the seat of Rockdale County — was purchased from LifePoint Health, a for-profit company based in Tennessee.

Piedmont officials announced the completion of the deal Oct. 2.

The Atlanta-based system may not be done with expanding in Georgia. Piedmont has entered exclusive partnership talks with Columbus Regional Health. That system operates three major facilities in Columbus — Midtown Medical Center, Northside Medical Center and the John B. Amos Cancer Center — as well as urgent care centers and multiple physician practices.

The Rockdale Medical deal was officially finalized Sunday, and a ceremony marking the acquisition was held Monday. The purchase price was not disclosed.

“Sixty-three years ago, our hospital was founded to meet the need for advanced medical services in Rockdale County,” Rick Simons, chairman of the board of directors for Piedmont Rockdale Hospital, said in a statement.

“Over the years, the hospital has grown and evolved with the community; however, the mission has always been to provide high-quality health care. Today, we celebrate the beginning of a new chapter. In joining Piedmont, we continue our commitment to the community of delivering excellent health care close to home.”

The new hospital CEO, Richard Tanzella, has been chief operating officer for Piedmont’s Physician Enterprise. He was instrumental in building the clinical affiliation between Piedmont and Rockdale that helped the 138-bed Conyers hospital expand its cardiovascular services.

“Over the past three years, I’ve gotten to know the area physicians through our clinical affiliation, and I look forward to working with clinicians and staff alike to improve the health and well-being of the Rockdale community,” Tanzella said in a statement.

The Rockdale deal follows Piedmont’s additions of Athens Regional Medical Center in Athens and Newton Medical Center in Covington, just 10 miles from the Rockdale hospital off I-20.

Chris Kane, a consultant for Progressive Healthcare, said Monday that “Rockdale is an important access point for the eastern metro market and complements the Newton hospital in Piedmont’s portfolio.’’

“Although a hospital affords an inpatient access point, the significant strategic benefit is the participation of the local physician community in Piedmont’s extensive outpatient network,’’ Kane added.

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