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St. Pete City Council approves sale of Bayfront Health St. Petersburg

The 480-bed hospital will join the Orlando Health network.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Thursday was a big day for the future of St. Pete's primary hospital, Bayfront Medical Center, which will soon be run by Orlando Health.

St. Petersburg City Council members approved the 50-year lease with two possible 10 year extensions in a 6-1 vote this afternoon.

The deputy mayor and other council members say Bayfront will continue operating as a nonprofit but will also bring in the additional financial resources from Orlando Health.

Councilwoman Amy Foster expressed concern about a lack of clarity in the agreement about the hospital's obligation to care for patients who aren't able to pay. The hospital responded by claiming to have one of the most generous charity care policies in Florida.

Council members are hopeful the change will lead to better morale among hospital staff and a higher level of care for those who live in St. Pete and surrounding areas.

RELATED: UPDATE: St. Pete City Council approves sale of Bayfront Health St. Petersburg

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