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Appleton Area Health Services Announces Partnership with Sanford Health

Appleton Area Health Services in Appleton, MN announced today a new relationship with Sanford Health.

(Appleton, MN & Sioux Falls, SD) – Appleton Area Health Services in Appleton, MN announced today a new relationship with Sanford Health. The community-owned medical center in west central Minnesota has entered into an associate agreement with Sanford Health, effective January 01, 2011.

“Rural hospitals face many challenges, and this associate relationship with Sanford Health allows us to continue to provide quality healthcare for people in the community. It also increases potential for growth in services,” said Jason Carlson, CEO, Appleton Area Health Services.

Sanford Health has several levels of relationships with area hospitals. These relationships range from associate, managed, leased and owned status. An associate agreement with Sanford Health allows Appleton Area Health Services access to Sanford’s volume purchasing power, saving money for the local hospital.

“This new relationship also expands education opportunities for staff and Appleton Area Health Services to gain and share ‘best practices’ knowledge with the entire Sanford Health system,” added Carlson.

Appleton Area Health Services consists of a 15-bed Critical Access Hospital, a long-term care facility, congregate living facility, home health and a primary care clinic. It employs approximately 170 full and part-time people. “We considered partnering with several health systems, but our board and city chose Sanford Health because of the similarities between our two organizations. We are aligned in our dedication to patient care as well as in our mission, vision and values,” Carlson said.

“Both of our organizations believe healthcare should be delivered as close to home as possible,” stated Ed Weiland, President, Sanford Health network. “Sanford Health has a significant presence in Minnesota, and by working together we can create a virtual medical hub for the area with potential for sharing expertise, resources and providers.

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 110 communities in eight states. In addition, Sanford Health is in the process of developing international clinics in Belize and Ireland.

Sanford Health includes 30 hospitals, 111 clinic locations and more than 800 physicians in 70 specialty areas of medicine. With more than 18,000 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

Stacy Bauer Jones | Media Relations Manager | Sioux Falls Region
605-328-7056 or 605-366-2432 |