Lafayette’s LHC gains 33 locations in five states

LHC Group Inc., a home health and hospice company in Lafayette, is adding 33 locations in five states with a $60 million acquisition of two subsidiaries of BioScrip Inc.

LHC said it signed a stock purchase agreement with BioScrip, of Minnesota, to acquire subsidiaries Deaconess HomeCare and Elk Valley Health Services.

The combined service area of Deaconess, in Hattiesburg, Miss., and Elk Valley, in Nashville, Tenn., includes 121 counties for home health, 30 counties for hospice and 95 counties for community-based services spread across Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois and Nebraska. Annual revenues are about $72.6 million for those operations.

The acquisition will add between 5 cents and 10 cents per diluted share to LHC’s 2014 earnings.

The transaction is expected to be completed by the end of the first quarter and will expand LHC’s geographic area to 342 locations across 27 states.

“As consolidation continues to occur in our industry, we look forward to more opportunities like this to join forces with other high-quality providers who share our values and commitment to excellence,” said Keith Myers, LHC Group chairman and chief executive officer.

“When we founded LHC Group 20 years ago, Deaconess HomeCare already had a strong reputation as one of the nation’s premier providers,” Myers said. “Joining forces with a provider of this caliber marks a great day for our company.”

“We feel the time is right to form this partnership for the benefit of our patients and employees. And given our shared values and culture, it is clear that LHC Group is the right partner,” said Penny Lovitt, vice president of operations at Deaconess HomeCare.

“Over our 45 years of business, we have learned that success comes through a constant focus on employee satisfaction and making quality patient care the top priority,” she noted. “The professionals at LHC Group share this view and are committed to supporting Deaconess Home­Care and Hospice and Elk Valley Health Services so that we can continue to provide the same high level of service.”

LHC’s stock rose 77 cents, or 3.4 percent, to $23.71 Monday.