May 2012

CHI, St. Mary’s Healthcare Center Explore Options with Avera Health

CHI and Avera Health, Sioux Falls, SD, have signed a letter of intent to explore their future relationship in the Pierre, SD, area. St. Mary’s Healthcare Center, in Pierre, is a part of Catholic Health Initiatives.

“The mission of Avera is to provide healthcare to people and communities across the region,” said Daryl Thuringer, vice president marketing and public relations, Avera. “We are excited that we might be able to provide a greater level of service in central South Dakota.”

“We believe the communities and patients that St. Mary’s serves may benefit from a closer relationship between Avera and St. Mary’s. As a strong regional health system, Avera may provide several opportunities to the Pierre and Gettysburg communities,” said Joe Messmer, Interim CEO, St. Mary’s Healthcare Center.

A letter of intent is a non-binding agreement and a “first step” toward formal discussions and an exchange of organizational information by Catholic Health Initiatives, St. Mary’s and Avera. In the next few weeks Avera representatives will visit St. Mary’s for this purpose.

Before any agreement can be completed, the organizations must conduct extensive due diligence, secure various approvals and negotiate a final or “definitive’ agreement – a process that could take several months.

Avera, the health ministry of the Benedictine and Presentation Sisters, is a regional partnership of health professionals. Avera provides care at more than 300 locations in eastern South Dakota and surrounding states.