'Desire to lead' bringing Intermountain and Sanford together

Intermountain Healthcare and Sanford Health plan to combine into one organization roughly nine months from now. The goal is to provide better access to high quality care that’s affordable.

“This is not something that needs to happen. This is not a turnaround. This is something that should happen for the future of American health care,” says Marc Harrison, MD, president and CEO of Intermountain Healthcare.

“One that includes incredible clinical care that people can be assured, and be focused, that their health care is being provided affordably,” says Kelby Krabbenhoft, president and CEO of Sanford Health.

Addressing employees

Krabbenhoft thanks Sanford Health and Intermountain Healthcare employees for their courageous work during the pandemic. He says the workforce on both sides should be excited about the merger.

“I think they should be optimistic. Today I hope they leave work and go home and tell their spouses and their families that they’re working for a really vibrant company that’s changing the state of things. Changing the course of history today. They’re going to be part of it,” Krabbenhoft said.

Once the merger takes place in the summer of 2021, the organization will employ 89,000 people.

“These are going to be brothers and sisters working together collaboratively on any number of problems. Hopefully, by then, the pandemic will be in our rearview mirror. But think of the good we can do not with 24 and 46 hospitals but with 70 hospitals and really good people working in them,” Dr. Harrison said.

New system will be a beacon

Dr. Harrison will be president and CEO of the combined organization. He says the new system that comes out of the merger should be a model that others can learn from.

“This merger is the next phase of being a forever organization. It will provide us with size, scope and resiliency to be able to not only weather the current health care environment and economic environment, it provides us with the tool to thrive within that. We have no desire to just exist. We have a desire to lead,” Dr. Harrison said.

Who's who

Intermountain Healthcare

  • Based in Salt Lake City, Utah
  • 41,000 caregivers
  • Serves the Intermountain West, primarily in Utah, Idaho, and Nevada
  • 24 hospitals (one that is virtual)
  • 225 clinics
  • A medical group
  • Home care, telehealth, health insurance plans, and other services

Sanford Health

  • Based in Sioux Falls, South Dakota
  • 48,000 employees
  • 1,500 providers
  • Serves 26 states and 10 countries
  • 46 hospitals
  • 210 clinics
  • 366 Good Samaritan Society senior care and senior living centers
  • Genomic medicine, global clinics, research, health insurance and other services