- Intermountain Healthcare and Colorado-based SCL Health signed a definitive agreement Wednesday to move forward with merger plans to create an $11 billion health system spanning six states.
- The deal is expected to close next April. Financial terms were not disclosed.
- Intermountain CEO Marc Harrison will serve as the leader of the combined organization.
Intermountain has been on the hunt for a deal to expand its reach and finally found a partner in SCL Health. The move will expand its presence to three additional states: Colorado, Montana and Kansas.
Together, the two will operate 33 hospitals, 385 clinics and a health plan that covers roughly 1 million people.
Intermountain previously courted South Dakota-based Sanford Health to form a largely rural health system with 70 hospitals and more than 400 clinics. That deal was supposed to close in 2021, but was called off after the departure of Sanford's CEO. He caused an uproar following an email he sent that said he would not wear a mask.
That failed deal, though, signaled to SCL Health leaders that Intermountain was on the hunt for a partner. Harrison previously said it was the best thing to come out of the failed Sanford merger bid.
SCL Health has significant market share in western Colorado and Montana. Analysts previously touted SCL Health's operations.
"All SCL Health regions have good population growth characteristics and stable payor mixes," Fitch reported.
The merged entity will hold on to the Intermountain brand, but SCL's Catholic facilities will keep their names and religious affiliations.
The deal comes as another wave of COVID-19 cases is bearing down on the U.S. ahead of the holidays, in which many are likely to travel and gather indoors, heightening the potential spread of the highly infectious disease.
Hospitals are again overwhelmed and in some places have been forced to pause non-emergency procedures as demand for care is outstripping the resources they have.