Just days ago, we told you that Ascension had plans to downscale its footprint, focusing less on its identity as a large hospital system in favor of more emphasis on broader community access and patient-driven care. Now the company is demonstrating that ethos by stepping back from its plans to merge with Providence St. Joseph Health, according to the Wall Street Journal. That deal would have made the combined company the largest hospital provider in the country.  However, Ascension did recently join forces with Presence Health, a large Chicago-based Catholic health system. Both organizations already have a sizable presence in Illinois. Presence is now part of a joint venture called Amita Health that Ascension shares with Adventist Midwest Health.

Update: Ascension, Providence Call Off Proposed Merger
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