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HealthSouth Corporation is considering selling its HealthSouth Medical Center to UA Health System.

Both sides confirm they are in preliminary talks about the deal, hoping to keep the 219-bed hospital open Birmingham's Southside.

UAB spokeswoman Dale Turnbough says the university is interested in maintaining the facility as a hospital for the community. Any purchase by UAB, however, would have to be approved in a public meeting before the University of Alabama System's board and Turnbough says there's no decision yet.

HealthSouth has spent $195 million on a hospital on US 280 as a replacement for the Southside hospital. Another 200 (M) million dollars is needed to complete the US 280 .project.

HealthSouth also is negotiating to sell the US 280 hospital to Baptist Health System.