By Joe Earle
joeearle@reporternewspapers.net

Officials at St. Joseph’s Health System say they are looking for a business partner after talks to set up a joint operating company with Piedmont Healthcare ended without an agreement this month.

“We are moving forward with other discussions with other potential partners,” St. Joseph’s spokeswoman Amanda Rosseter said.

She declined to name potential partners.

Sandy Springs-based St. Joseph’s Health System and Buckhead-based Piedmont Healthcare announced in April they had reached an agreement to negotiate the creation of a joint operating company to run portions of their businesses. At the time, hospital officials said that the new company would likely include St. Joseph’s Hospital and that St. Joseph’s would remain a Catholic hospital while Piedmont Hospital would continue to operate as a secular institution.

The talks ended without an agreement on how to set up the new company, and officials of the two companies decided not to continue negotiations, Rosseter said. The talks collapsed, she said, because the two health care companies had different goals.

“In the end, there was not enough common ground to extend the talks beyond 90 days,” she said.