NorthShore University HealthSystem and Edward-Elmhurst Health in the US have announced plans to merge under a new nine-hospital parent entity.

Once the merger concludes, the combined entity will have 25,000 team members and more than 6,000 physicians. It will comprise two regions – NorthShore and Edward-Elmhurst.

Through an expansive geographic network of hospitals and more than 300 ambulatory facilities throughout the region, the combined company will serve more than 4.2 million residents.

Together, NorthShore and Edward-Elmhurst will extend their focus on community-connected, expert care.

NorthShore University HealthSystem president and CEO J.P. Gallagher said: “NorthShore and Edward-Elmhurst Health share a vision of delivering expanded access to a transformative, differentiated patient care experience.

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“By working together, we will connect patients and communities to personalised care, advanced clinical solutions and innovative technologies through improved access, expertise and services.”

The organisations have also announced plans to create two community investment funds. Each of them will commit $100m to their respective communities.

These funds will be used to support partnerships with organisations working to enhance community health equity.

NorthShore and Edward-Elmhurst are poised for growth in several services such as orthopedics, cardiology, obstetrics and behavioural health.

They propose to maintain existing physician and medical groups and ensure physicians remain the key clinical decision-makers.

The transaction is subject to regulatory review and approval and is slated for completion later this year.

To be led by Gallagher as president and CEO, the new organisation will be governed by a single board of directors with representation from NorthShore, Edward-Elmhurst, Swedish Hospital and Northwest Community Hospital board members.

Joining the executive team of the new organisation, Mary Lou Mastro will maintain leadership as the Edward-Elmhurst region CEO.