By Associated Press - Friday, February 9, 2018

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - A large hospital system in North Carolina is joining a health organization in Georgia.

Media outlets reported Charlotte-based Carolinas HealthCare Systems plans to combine with Navicent Health of Macon, Georgia.

The move comes a day after Carolinas HealthCare System announced its new name, Atrium Health.

Atrium is working to combine with Chapel Hill-based UNC Health Care. That plan announced last summer will create one of the largest hospital systems in the country, with 90,000 employees. The combination would operate 60 hospitals in the Carolinas.

Navicent has five hospitals and more than 4,500 employees.

Atrium and Navicent said Thursday the deal will improve health care access, affordability and equity of care in central and south Georgia.

UNC Health said it was aware that Atrium and Navicent were in discussions to merge.

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