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Two Health Systems Unite in Wheaton

Sanford Health and Wheaton Community Hospital and Medical Center Join

(Fargo, ND) – Wheaton Community Hospital and Medical Center officially became Sanford Wheaton Medical Center July 1, making its merger complete. This partnership is the result of talks that formally began several years ago. The public is invited open house Tuesday, July 12 from 4-6 p.m.

As the largest rural health system in the Midwest, it is Sanford Health’s goal to make sure patients don’t travel more than 45 minutes for quality health care.

“Sanford Health is proud to welcome Wheaton Community Hospital and Medical Center to the Sanford family,” said Jesse Tischer, vice president, Sanford Health Network. “Our belief is that health care is a local asset and we look forward to continuing the strong hospital-community relationship in Wheaton.”

All employees will become Sanford employees and no changes are expected in services, with the exception of looking at additional services to offer.

“Sanford Health’s affiliation with Wheaton will provide the stability, financial backing and resources to assure the long-term viability of quality health care in Wheaton,” said JoAnn Foltz, CEO of the new Sanford Wheaton Medical Center. “Sanford shares our dedication to the work of healing and we are excited about the opportunity to continue quality care.”

This partnership will provide continued availability of local care, access to additional services and specialists, and advanced technology, including the electronic medical record. As a part of a larger health system, management and consulting services will improve efficiencies, increase purchasing power, and provide availability to expertise to help address today’s increasingly complex health care environment.

About Sanford Wheaton Medical Center
Wheaton, population 1,600, is located 93 miles south of Fargo-Moorhead. Sanford Wheaton Medical Center is a 15-bed critical access hospital established in 1950. Clinic services were added in 2005 and will continue with an enhanced relationship with the Sanford Clinic. Clinic services include primary care in addition to specialty outreach. Sanford Wheaton Medical Center employs 95 people, serving Traverse County and neighboring towns.

About Sanford Health
Sanford Health is an integrated health system headquartered in Fargo, ND and Sioux Falls, SD and consists of two long-standing organizations that merged in 2009. Sanford is now the largest, rural, not-for-profit healthcare system in the nation with a presence in 111 communities in eight states. In addition, Sanford Health is in the process of developing international clinics in Belize and Ireland.

Sanford Health includes 32 hospitals, 111 clinic locations and more than 900 physicians in 70 specialty areas of medicine. With more than 20,000 employees, Sanford Health is the largest employer in North and South Dakota. The system is experiencing dynamic growth and development in conjunction with Denny Sanford's $400 million gift in 2007, the largest gift ever to a healthcare organization in America. This gift is making possible the implementation of the several initiatives including global children's clinics, multiple research centers and finding a cure for type 1 diabetes. For more information, visit www.sanfordhealth.org.


Contact:
Andrea Voorhees  |  Sanford Media Strategist  |  Fargo Region
701-200-6080  |  andrea.voorhees@sanfordhealth.org