Advocate and NorthShore Combine to Create Preeminent Health Care System

Merger of state's top-tier health providers will improve access to care and lower costs

Chicago, Ill. —­­ Advocate Health Care and NorthShore University HealthSystem announced today they intend to combine to create Advocate NorthShore Health Partners (ANHP). When complete, ANHP will be the largest integrated health care delivery system in Illinois and the 11th largest not-for-profit health care system in the United States, serving 3 million patients annually.

“We have great respect for the NorthShore organization. We see the world through the same lens – providing exceptional patient care by delivering better health outcomes at a lower cost,” said Jim Skogsbergh, President and Chief Executive Officer of Advocate. “In addition to an outstanding leadership team, medical group and strong reputation for quality, NorthShore is a pioneer in developing a tightly integrated system – advancing alignment with physicians and hospitals.”

Both the Advocate and the NorthShore Board of Directors voted this week to sign the affiliation agreement, announcing the decision to physicians and associates across both organizations today. Both organizations say that coming together will create a preeminent health care system, focused on a patient-centered, fully integrated population health delivery model.

“This agreement brings together the best of our two health systems: quality, safety and clinical integration supported by translational research and technology advancements,” said Mark Neaman, President and Chief Executive Officer of NorthShore. “Advocate leads the way in their proven approach to population health. By joining together, we will raise the bar regionally and nationally for a new model of health care delivery,” Neaman added.

The affiliation agreement outlines plans to consolidate balance sheets and a single Board of Directors, as well as a unified mission, vision and strategy. Skogsbergh and Neaman will serve as Co-CEOs for a designated timeframe. The ANHP Board of Directors will be made up of an equal number of members from Advocate and NorthShore.

The Advocate and NorthShore names will continue to be used under the new structure. “Both organizations have a rich history of serving our communities and we will continue to build upon that strength,” said Skogsbergh.

“We share a long-term strategy to reduce costs while improving efficiencies and advancing quality,” said NorthShore Board Chair, Steven Crown. “We have to be leaders in an ever-changing health care marketplace and by working together, we can enhance access to care across the diverse communities we serve.”

“Combined we will create economies of scale that will allow us to reduce the trend of rising health care costs,” said Advocate Board Chair, Michele Richardson. “Both organizations have a long standing commitment to quality, and together we will continue to advance innovation and outcomes.”

The agreement is subject to multiple regulatory approvals including the Federal Trade Commission, the State of Illinois and by the United Church of Christ. A review of the optimal debt structure of the combined organization is slated over the next several months and closing is expected in early 2015.

About Advocate Health Care

Advocate Health Care, named one of nation’s top five health systems based on quality and efficiencies, is the largest health system in Illinois and one of the largest health care providers in the Midwest. Advocate operates more than 250 sites of care, including 10 acute care hospitals, the state’s largest integrated children’s network, five Level I trauma centers (the state’s highest designation in trauma care), two Level II trauma centers, one of the area’s largest home health care companies and one of the region’s largest medical groups. Advocate Health Care trains more primary care physicians and residents at its four teaching hospitals than any other health system in the state. As a not-for-profit, mission-based health system affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the United Church of Christ, Advocate contributed $641 million in charitable care and services to communities across Chicagoland and Central Illinois in 2013.

About NorthShore University HealthSystem

NorthShore University HealthSystem is an integrated healthcare delivery system consistently named among the nation’s best. NorthShore cares for patients at four hospitals – Evanston, Glenbrook, Highland Park and Skokie – and through a multispecialty physician practice, NorthShore Medical Group, comprised of 900 primary and specialty care physicians located in 100-plus offices across Chicago and many of the Northern Suburbs. NorthShore is a Magnet recognized organization, the first in Illinois designated as an entire system to receive this prestigious honor that demonstrates excellence in nursing and high standards in patient care. The system also supports the NorthShore Research Institute; the NorthShore Philanthropic Foundation; and NorthShore Home & Hospice Services. In addition to launching Be Well Lake County, a community health initiative committed to providing greater access to comprehensive care, NorthShore contributes more than $268 million in charitable care and services to the community it serves.

View the fact sheet about both organizations »