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JEFFERSON, La. -- Jefferson Parish may owe Health Corporation of America hundreds of millions of dollars at the end of the 30-year lease, if it gets the contract to run the parish's two public hospitals.

That's according to an analysis released Tuesday by JP Council Chairman Chris Roberts.

The analysis was based on HCA's commitment to $45 million per year in capital improvements.

'The Parish Council Budget and Research Office determined a remaining value in new structures at the end of the lease of $578,812,500 based on their letter of intent would be required to be paid to HCA at the end of the lease term,' Roberts said.

A spokesperson for HCA disputes Robert's claims and has released a statement: 'HCA does not believe that the Parish will ever have to make a payment given the likelihood of renewals. In the unlikely event that a payment is required, the Parish would need only set aside at closing $57.5 million in order to have the funds to pay the estimated lease termination payment.'

Louisiana Children's Medical Center and Ochsner Health Systems are also vying for the hospital contract.

All three suitors are expected to participate at a public forum, hosted by the West Jefferson Civic Association, Wednesday night. The event is expected to be held from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM at West Jefferson Medical Center in Marrero.

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