MUSC is expanding in South Carolina, purchasing four community hospitals in Chester, Florence, Lancaster and Mullins.

This is likely the beginning of the hospital empire-building process that has already happened in the larger urban areas of the country.  In many areas of the US, the healthcare is dominated by 2-3 large hospital networks.  The advantage is it feeds their specialty centers, and allows some reduction in expenses.  However, it makes it harder for employees as they may not be able to find  a health plan that includes their doctors/hospital.