Providence may merge with Ascension to design a huge hospital network

Providence St. Joseph Health, one of the most vital healthcare systems operating several hospitals across five U.S. states, is exploring myriad avenues to enter a joint venture with Ascension Health, the world’s largest healthcare system based in the U.S. Experts claim that the strategic alliance is likely to give rise to country’s biggest hospital network. According to authentic sources, the two reputed healthcare organizations are keen on sharing anonymized patient information, which may come to fruition through this deal. It has been predicted that both the healthcare systems will jointly account for nearly 191 hospitals in the U.S.As per reports, the two healthcare systems are competing in different regions – while Ascension Health’s hospital channels operate in the Midwest and the South, Providence has struck gold in the West. Both the firms have hospitals in Washington as well as Texas. Ascension in fact, controls the Pasco-based Lourdes Health Network in Washington. Industry analysts are of the view that Providence is determined to expand its hospital network beyond the West Coast, where the firm already handles the healthcare activities of nearly fifty hospitals in the region.

According to experts, the healthcare industry has been experiencing a plethora of mergers & acquisitions and joint ventures over the last few years. Earlier in December this year, Dignity Health and Catholic Health Initiatives signed a merger pact as per which both will provide combined services in 139 hospitals located across nearly twenty-eight states in the U.S. In yet another major breakthrough witnessed across the healthcare sector this month, CVS Health, a U.S. based healthcare firm, has made an offer of USD 69 billion to purchase Aetna, a U.S. healthcare firm.

However, analysts have raised concerns that such strategic alliances can create monopolies in the medical industry, leading to more focus on revenue generation than on patient care.