HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – The state attorney general’s office has announced a consent decree on the long-delayed merger between UPMC and Jameson Health system in western Pennsylvania.

Officials said Tuesday that the final order requires that UPMC Jameson remain an acute care hospital for at least 10 years and maintain all contracts Jameson currently has with health plans through their expiration.

UPMC will also be required to contract with all health plans that want one with Jameson for 10 years, with “last best offer arbitration” to set the terms if a health plan and UPMC disagree.

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The attorney general’s office had opposed the $80 million merger, saying it could reduce competition and drive up costs.

Jameson then sought new partners but a mediator ruled that two other merger bids didn’t fit the agreed-upon criteria.

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