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Tidewell's parent buys home health care firm

The Herald-Tribune - 1/12/2018

Jan. 12--Stratum Health System, the Sarasota company that owns Tidewell Hospice, has acquired a Naples-based home health care company, Avidity Home Health.

Avidity is approved by Medicare and accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Health Care, according to a news release Thursday from Stratum. Its website indicates it provides skilled nursing, social services, rehabilitation therapy and home health aides. It has offices in Fort Myers as well as in Naples.

Stratum, through Tidewell Hospice, provides post-acute care services in Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte and DeSoto counties. Avidity currently serves customers in Lee and Collier counties, along with Clewiston in Hendry County.

"We were looking for a partner with a strong history of providing quality services and a similar culture to support the expansion of our services," Avidity CEO J.P. Martin said the press release. "We found that partner in Stratum Health System."

Martin will continue in his role as CEO of Avidity and will retain a minority ownership. The transition will be seamless to customers and the community. The company will continue to operate under the Avidity name and day-to-day activities and interactions with patients and families will continue under the Avidity Home Health brand.

The deal follows the $4 billion purchase in December by private-equity firms and Humana, the fourth-largest U.S. health insurer, of Kindred Healthcare. As part of that deal, Humana was paying $800 million for a 40 percent stake in Kindred at Home, a home health care company with offices in Bradenton, Sarasota and Port Charlotte.

Cory Mertz, managing partner of Mertz Taggart, Fort Myers, represented Stratum in the Avidity acquisition. No financial terms were disclosed.

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(c)2018 Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Fla.

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