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Dickinson County Health System plans to join Marshfield Clinic Health System

Dickinson County Healthcare (DCH), and Marshfield Clinic Health System have signed a Letter of Intent for DCH hospital and clinics to join Marshfield Clinic.

The deal would bring Marshfield Clinic’s health system to the Upper Peninsula and provides DCH with resources for the continued expansion of locally-based services, providers and locations.

“This is a game-changer for our local community,” said Chuck Nelson, CEO of Dickinson County Healthcare in a written statement. “Our momentum at DCH is stronger than ever. Joining Marshfield Clinic helps us expand locally-based access to even higher-quality health care. Together we will add more primary care and specialty providers, widen our scope of services and improve our care environments across all our locations. As a physician-led organization, Marshfield Clinic is best prepared to help lead the health care discussion in the Upper Peninsula.”

The two healthcare groups said in a joint news-release that the focus will be on expanding locally-provided outpatient surgeries, supporting DCH’s large pediatric team with Marshfield Children’s Hospital, and growing DCH’s primary care provider team.

Another key element of the partnership is the construction of a new state-of-the-art Cancer Center, which would bring a full spectrum of oncology services to the region. The center would incorporate already initiated multi-million-dollar capital expenditures for a highly advanced linear accelerator that provides radiation treatment and nuclear medicine technology for diagnostics.

“We know how vital access to local, quality care is for rural communities. Many patients across rural America have little or no access to public transit and drive an hour or more for even routine care. In Michigan and Wisconsin, that means long distances on icy winter roads,” said Dr. Susan Turney, CEO of Marshfield Clinic Health System. “Our integrated model allows us to deliver the full continuum of health care and services in small, rural communities. We are excited to extend care for the first time beyond the borders of Wisconsin, and we could not have a better partner in this venture than DCH. Together, we will define the future of rural health care, and create a regional hub for care in the Upper Peninsula.”

The next step is for the organizations to develop a definitive affiliation agreement, which is anticipated to be completed by the end of the year. Final closing would occur in 2022. Additional terms of the deal won’t be shared at this time.

Katie Thoresen is WXPR's News Director/Vice President.
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