Bishop Anthony Taylor of the Diocese of Little Rock says he pleased by news that an agreement to sell Mercy Hot Springs hospital to Capella Healthcare will not take place.
Taylor said Friday that Thursday's announcement that the purchase agreement between Mercy and Capella will expire without a sale is a "welcome" decision.
Franklin, Tenn.-based Capella and Chesterfield, Mo.-based Mercy Health announced in September plans to merge National Park Medical Center and Mercy Hot Springs.
Taylor said that the sale would require approval from the Vatican because of Mercy's relationship to the Catholic Church.
Taylor said Friday that the Vatican had not authorized the proposed sale.
Taylor says the Diocese of Little Rock will work to help Mercy Hot Springs thrive and become more productive.