Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare to join Ascension

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare officially joined Ascension on March 1.

The Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare facilities in southeast Wisconsin are expected to join the Ascension health system. The Wheaton facilities, including All Saints in Racine and Elmbrook Memorial Campus in Brookfield, would become a part of Ascension Wisconsin, which is comprised of Ministry Health Care based in Milwaukee and Columbia St. Mary’s in Milwaukee.

Wheaton announced today that Ascension signed a letter of intent with the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters for the transfer of all southeast Wisconsin operations and related corporate services of Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare to Ascension Wisconsin. The St. Louis-based Ascension is a leading non-profit health system and the world’s largest Catholic health system.

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare is planning to Join Ascension.

The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2016.

Upon the closing, Ascension Wisconsin will include 27 hospitals, more than 24,000 associates including a thousand medical group physicians, 150 clinics, and $3.5 billion in annual operating revenues.

The Wheaton southeast facilities joining Ascension Wisconsin would be All Saints in Racine, Elmbrook Memorial Campus in Brookfield, St. Joseph and St. Francis in Milwaukee; Wisconsin Heart Hospital and Midwest Spine and Orthopedic Hospital in Wauwatosa; Franklin Hospital and Midwest Orthopedic Specialty Hospital, a joint venture, in Franklin; and Wheaton Franciscan Medical Group, outpatient centers, three transitional and extended care facilities, Home Health, and Hospice.

“Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare and Ascension share the same mission – caring for all persons, especially those who are struggling the most,” said Robert Henkel, executive vice president of Ascension and president and chief executive officer of Ascension Health. “We share the same approach to serving our communities – providing compassionate, personalized care to all throughout their life.”

“Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare has a long history of delivering high-quality and compassionate care in southeast Wisconsin through our dedicated physicians and associates,” said John Oliverio, president and CEO of Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare. “We look forward to our continued discussions with Ascension and the opportunity to be part of an organization that shares our strong commitment to our local communities. We anticipate reaching a definitive agreement and completing the transfer in early 2016.”

The transition in southeast Wisconsin is planned to occur in coordination with the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters’ transfer of their other health care and housing ministries in Iowa, Illinois and Colorado.

Further details were not disclosed due to the pending transaction.

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare is one of the largest health care providers of care in southeast Wisconsin, with nearly 11,000 associates including 350 medical group physicians. In fiscal year 2015 the system provided $139 million in charity care and other community benefits through its eight hospital campuses comprising 996 hospital beds, three long-term care facilities and other sites of care.

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