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Emory Healthcare and Saint Joseph's Hospital close partnership deal

A joint operating company between the health systems will expand patient services and allow medical records to be shared.

Emory Healthcare and Saint Joseph's Health System have successfully closed the terms of their partnership, effectively allowing the two preeminent health care systems to combine key strengths and resources, while meeting the needs of a rapidly growing and aging population.

The announcement comes nearly 10 months after the two organizations announced their intent to form a joint operating company (JOC). The move, effective Jan. 1, 2012, combines the renowned "heart hospital" of Saint Joseph's with the Emory Johns Creek Hospital, under the Emory Healthcare umbrella.

"We are pleased with the progress of this partnership and look forward to the many benefits it will bring to both organizations and our patients," says John T. Fox, Emory Healthcare president and CEO. "The partnership will enable us to expand services, facilitating broader patient access while providing a more cohesive experience through sharing electronic medical records. While this partnership has taken time to develop, I have never been more excited about our future. Emory Healthcare and Saint Joseph's, two of Atlanta's oldest, most established and respected centers for health and healing, can now begin the work of enhancing patient care together."

"The boards and management teams from both Emory Healthcare and Saint Joseph's Hospital have spent countless hours working through this regulatory process to arrive at this great venture," says Steve Eaton, chairman of Saint Joseph's Health System Board of Trustees. "Joining these two organizations is a tremendous accomplishment and one that will benefit generations of Georgians for years to come."

S. Wright Caughman, chairman of the board of Emory Healthcare and executive vice president for health affairs of Emory University, adds: "This partnership between Emory Healthcare and Saint Joseph's Health System is a welcome addition to the Woodruff Health Sciences Center and all of Emory University. The Woodruff Health Sciences Center's tripartite missions of teaching, research and patient care are greatly enhanced through the combined efforts of Saint Joseph's and Emory Healthcare. We look forward to combining our distinctive strengths to create a successful organization that serves humanity by improving health and healing."

The proposed arrangement will give Emory Healthcare a majority ownership of Saint Joseph's, with a 51/49 fraction split. Saint Joseph's will retain involvement in governance of the JOC, including super majority voting rights on issues critical to Saint Joseph's mission, values and Catholic religious and ethical directives. The JOC has received the required regulatory approvals as well as approval from the Vatican.

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