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Ascension takes on Wheaton Franciscan facilities in Southeast Wisconsin: 6 things to know

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St. Louis-based Ascension has signed a letter of intent with the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters for the transfer of all Southeast Wisconsin operations and related corporate services of Glendale, Wis.-based Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare to Ascension Wisconsin.

Here are six things to know about the transaction.

1. When the transaction closed, Ascension Wisconsin will comprise 27 hospitals; more than 24,000 associates, including 1,000 medical group physicians; 150 clinics and $3.5 billion in annual operating revenues.

2. Ascension Wisconsin, which is composed of Milwaukee-based Ministry Health Care and Columbia St. Mary's, also in Milwaukee, would expand to include the following Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare facilities:

  • All Saints (Racine, Wis.)
  • Elmbrook Memorial Campus (Brookfield, Wis.)
  • St. Joseph and St. Francis (Milwaukee)
  • Wisconsin Heart Hospital and Midwest Spine and Orthopedic Hospital (Wauwatosa, Wis.)
  • Franklin Hospital and Midwest Orthopedic Specialty Hospital (Franklin, Wis.)
  • Wheaton Franciscan Medical Group, outpatient centers, three transitional and extended care facilities, home health and hospice.

3. Sister Pat Norton, chairwoman of the sponsor member board for Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare, said of the letter of intent, "This decision came after a lengthy discernment process by the Sisters as we are aging and our numbers are getting smaller in the United States. We wanted to transfer our corporate ministries while these ministries are healthy, fiscally sound and have a strong sense of mission and values." She added, "The choice to transfer our ministries ensures that the needs of the times will continue to be addressed in each community, as the Sisters have worked to do for more than 140 years."

4. The transition in Southeast Wisconsin is planned to occur in coordination with the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters' transfer of their other healthcare and housing ministries in Iowa, Illinois and Colorado.

5. The involved parties said they will not communicate further details on the transaction until the deal has been closed.

6. Ascension and Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare anticipate a definitive agreement and completing the transfer in early 2016.


More articles on healthcare transactions:

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Third time's not a charm: Why the Lahey-Beth Israel merger has failed three times


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