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It hasn’t been 2 weeks since the first of two healthcare megadeals was announced (CVS buying Aetna, followed closely by UnitedHealth Group announcing it was going to buy DaVita’s medical group), but they’re already being cited as the reason for consolidation in the hospital marketplace. Dignity Health in California and Colorado’s Catholic Health Initiative are expected to team up in a move that would have the combined system controlling some 700 care cites and 139 hospitals. In addition, Advocate Health Care in Chicago and Aurora Health Care (Milwaukee) are working on the logistics of operating 27 hospitals and more than 500 care sites together. Finally, the Wall Street Journal reports that Ascension and Providence St. Joseph Health will link to create the most widespread system of the bunch—197 hospitals in 27 states. What they’re all after, in a word, is scale to compete for outpatient traffic in the growing walk-in sector. It remains to be seen how these moves will affect urgent care centers in or out of those hospital systems.

Proposed Hospital Mergers Are Attributed to CVS, UnitedHealth Group Deals
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