CANTON, Ohio – Cleveland Clinic and the Sisters of Charity Health System today signed a non-binding letter of intent to explore Mercy Medical Center becoming a full member of the Cleveland Clinic health system while maintaining its Catholic identity through sponsorship by the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine.
The Sisters of Charity Health System, which is the sole member of Mercy Medical Center, and Cleveland Clinic will begin a careful and thorough review to complete the due diligence process that will outline how they will move forward to best meet the health care needs of residents in Stark County and surrounding communities.
“Since its founding in 1908, Mercy Medical Center has been a treasured ministry of the Sisters of Charity,” said Sister Judith Ann Karam, CSA, congregational leader of the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine. “Our goal is to position Mercy so its caregivers, physicians and volunteers can continue to provide safe, high-quality Catholic health care to Stark County and beyond for generations to come. In our rapidly evolving health care environment, hospitals have a greater opportunity to successfully serve individuals, families and communities by working in clinically integrated systems of care. And, Cleveland Clinic is Ohio’s most comprehensive health care network.”
Benefits of the potential partnership include expanding high-quality services; expanding and improving technology at Mercy Medical Center; providing additional support and investment in addressing the unmet needs in the community; building physician synergies; and increasing the ease of access to the most highly specialized services for patients in Stark County if and when needed.
“We are excited for this potential partnership of Mercy with a world-class health system that will maintain its roots in Northeast Ohio,” said Thomas J. Strauss, president & CEO of the Sisters of Charity Health System and interim CEO of Mercy. “Joining with Cleveland Clinic, which has strong local presence, will help Mercy Medical Center strengthen its services to the community; provide expanded options for clinical services and support important growth initiatives that will provide for the long-term sustainability of Catholic health care in Canton.”
The Sisters of Charity Health System and Cleveland Clinic will work toward finalizing a definitive agreement. The due diligence, regulatory and Church requirements will all inform the timeline and further details of this transaction.
“Cleveland Clinic is committed to keeping Mercy Medical Center strong and ensuring that Catholic health care continues to be delivered in Stark County,” said Tom Mihaljevic, M.D., CEO and President of Cleveland Clinic. “Our mission is to do what is best for our patients, and to maintain a commitment to safety, quality and exceptional outcomes at every one of our hospitals. We know how important Mercy is to the people of Stark County and we look forward to continue providing opportunities for growth.”
Cleveland Clinic is a nonprofit multispecialty academic medical center that integrates clinical and hospital care with research and education. U.S. News & World Report consistently names Cleveland Clinic as one of the nation’s top hospitals in its annual “America’s Best Hospitals” survey and has ranked it No. 1 in heart care for 25 consecutive years. Cleveland Clinic currently operates 11 regional hospitals in Cuyahoga, Lorain, Medina, Summit and Tuscarawas counties.
Mercy Medical Center, a Catholic health care organization, operates a 476-bed hospital serving Stark, Carroll, Wayne, Holmes and Tuscarawas counties and parts of southeastern Ohio. It has 620 members on its medical staff and employs 2,500 people. U.S. News & World Report recently ranked Mercy 17th on its list of Ohio’s best hospitals.