Negotiations for merger between ECU and Vidant Health move forward

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) — A vote by the UNC Board of Governors moved negotiations forward for a merger between the East Carolina University Physicians group and Vidant Health.

“Project Unify” is a major move for healthcare in eastern North Carolina.

Board members decided that UNC System President Margaret Spellings, the ECU chancellor and the chair of the Board’s budget and finance committee will handle the final deal.

Several more steps must then occur before authorization and approval of any negotiation.

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ECU Chancellor Cecil Staton said it’s a step in the right direction.

“Both Vidant and ECU have close to 400 physicians, in our case about 1,200 people that work behind those physicians,” he said. “But we’re looking at a way to bring them together so that we can advance the mission of delivering health care in rural, under-served areas, training the work force for under-served and rural areas.”

No deadline is set for these talks to be completed.

The next Board of Governors meeting is in May.

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