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Northwood Deaconess Signs Management Agreement with Sanford

Sanford Health to manage Northwood Deaconess Health Center facilities Dec. 1, 2011

(Northwood, ND) – The board of directors of the Northwood Deaconess Health Center (NDHC) recently approved an agreement with Sanford Health to manage its facilities. NDHC is located in Northwood, ND (40 miles southwest of Grand Forks and 90 miles northwest of Fargo) population 950. The agreement takes effect Dec. 1, 2011.

The agreement means NDHC has hired Sanford Health to manage the business operations. The board of directors of NDHC will remain in place and the organization ownership remains the same. The facilities will continue to be owned by NDHC and the ultimate decision making authority for of the organization will continue to fall under the governing board of NDHC, as elected by the owner churches. 

The agreement will allow NDHC to access resources. It will allow NDHC to access Sanford resources and policies to help it better manage and operate its organization. It enables NDHC to leverage the purchasing power of Sanford to buy at better prices. As new federal mandates are enforced, the resources of Sanford can be utilized to develop policies, procedures, and compliance programs to help address today's increasingly complex health care environment. This new relationship also expands education opportunities for physicians and staff to gain and share ‘best practices’ knowledge with the entire Sanford Health system.

As part of the agreement, NDHC’s CEO Pete Antonson and Director of Nursing Carla Sletten, will become employees of Sanford.

“Rural hospitals face many challenges, and this associate relationship with Sanford Health allows us to continue to provide quality health care for people in the community. It also increases potential for growth in services. We’ve already added Sanford Radiology and Psychiatric Services.” said Pete Antonson, CEO, NDHC.

Sanford Health has several levels of relationships with hospitals ranging from associate, managed, leased and owned status. The agreement between NDHC and Sanford developed from a longstanding relationship with clinics and hospitals in the Northwood area including: Sanford Health East Grand Forks Clinic, Sanford Mayville, Sanford Health Hillsboro Clinic and Hillsboro Medical Center. 

“Patients are at the center of every decision we make when forming a partnership. Sanford is committed to keeping care local and building on the tradition of medicine Northwood is known for. We are excited to be partnering with Northwood,”  said, Rick Giesel, president, Sanford Health Network Fargo.

About Northwood Deaconess Health Center
NDHC has over 200 employees and was established in 1902. It is owned by 11 Lutheran Churches.  NDHC includes: a 12- bed hospital, 61-bed skilled nursing facility (including a unit specializing in dementia care), 6 units assisted living, 10 units independent living,  a laboratory and x-ray services, physical rehabilitation and occupational therapy, cardiac/pulmonary rehabilitation, ambulance services and community fitness center. There is an attached Clinic owned by Valley Community Health Center, which also has clinics in Grand Forks and Larimore, ND.  For more information, visit

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 health care system in the nation with locations in 112 communities in seven states. In addition, Sanford Health is in the process of developing international clinics in Ireland, Ghana Africa, Israel and Mexico.

Sanford Health includes 34 hospitals, 116 clinic locations and 1,000 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 health care organization in America. This gift is making possible the implementation of the several initiatives including global children's clinics, multiple research centers, eradicating breast cancer and finding a cure for type 1 diabetes. For more information, visit

Pete Antonson | CEO | Northwood Deaconess Health Center
(701) 587-6459 |
Andrea Voorhees | Media Relations Strategist | Fargo Region
701-200-6080 |
Follow Me @SanfordAndrea