Home health provider Amedisys Inc. said on Wednesday that it would close 39 locations and open fewer new ones next year.

The company said 13 agencies (including nine home health agencies and four for hospice) would close altogether. Director of Investor Relations Kevin B. LeBlanc said those patients will shift to another company.

Twenty-six more (including 23 home health agencies and three for hospice) will be consolidated into existing Amedisys locations in the same region, so most of those patients will stay with the company, LeBlanc said.

The company said it now plans to open five to 10 home health locations next year, down from 40 in 2010.

It said the closures would cost $6 million to $8 million in the third quarter of this year, and $1 million in the fourth. The bulk of the charges are for lease terminations.

Chief operating officer Michael Snow said the company's growth in the last few years "inevitably led to markets that could benefit from consolidation. This is a continuous process to enhance our infrastructure and adjust our operating culture to position Amedisys for the next phase of growth."

Amedisys shares had fallen 41 cents to close at $29.26 before the announcement.