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North Carolina radiology merger forms 90-person practice

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The merger of two large radiology groups in North Carolina will create one of the largest radiology practices in the nation. A benefit of the consolidation will be a comprehensive network of subspecialty, around-the-clock radiology services, group officials said.

The merger of two large radiology groups in North Carolina will create one of the largest radiology practices in the nation. A benefit of the consolidation will be a comprehensive network of subspecialty, around-the-clock radiology services, group officials said.

"It made sense from a patient care perspective," said Charlotte Radiology president Dr. Arl Van Moore, in an interview with Diagnostic Imaging.

According to the Sept. 21 announcement, physicians from Charlotte Radiology and Cabarrus Radiologists will join forces to provide radiology services for Carolinas HealthCare System hospitals in Mecklenburg, Cabarrus, Union, Lincoln, and Anson counties, as well as for Scotland Memorial Hospital, Davis Regional Medical Center, and First Health Richmond Memorial Hospital.

The combined imaging groups will operate 12 breast centers, an interventional radiology clinic, a vascular center, one ultrasound and two MRI mobile units, and five outpatient imaging centers. The merger will operate under the Charlotte Radiology name and employ between 85 and 90 radiologists. It will become effective Jan. 1, 2010. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Van Moore chaired the American of College of Radiology's board of chancellors from May 2006 to May 2008.

The move was prompted in part by the merger of two major health systems in the region, Carolinas and Northeast Medical Center, served by Charlotte and Cabarrus, respectively. However, radiologists from both groups saw an opportunity to strengthen subspecialty care services, Van Moore said.

"Charlotte Radiology has already developed a subspecialty model in radiology. And we look at being able to deliver that subspecialty model to Northeast and integrate their high-quality radiologists, who had also started developing a subspecialty model," he said.

Charlotte-Cabarrus practice will have a staff large enough to cover their hospitals during off-hour shifts. It may also make possible subspecialty night reads, Van Moore said.

"Our radiologists have been committed to our community for more than 30 years; nothing about that is going to change," said Cabarrus Radiologists president Dr. David Wehrung. "We believe that a merger with Charlotte Radiology will strengthen both groups, allowing us to further grow and improve our imaging services."

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