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Is a merger between Grinnell Regional Medical Center and Mercy Hospital in the immediate future?

No, said members of the GRMC board of directors on Wednesday night, Jan. 27.

 The board had until Jan. 31 to decide whether to:

– Maintaining the current “affiliate” agreement between the two;

– Having GRMC become a Mercy-managed facility or;

– Joining the Mercy Health Network.

The two entities will maintain the status quo.

“The board recognizes that GRMC likely needs to integrate fully with a larger healthcare system, to sustain viability because of the changes taking place in healthcare,” said Todd Reding, board chair.

“However, the board decided that now is not the right time to move toward a full merger with Mercy Medical Center,” Reding said.

Reding said the GRMC board will now assess how the medical center can be achieve its goals and objectives.

Reding made his comments in a press release issued by Grinnell Regional on Thursday, Jan. 28.

Grinnell Regional is looking for ways to navigate through a maze of inadequate government reimbursements and rising costs.

“This was a difficult decision and is in no way critical of Mercy,” Reding said. “In fact, we have been pleased with our affiliation relationship with Mercy Health Network over the past six years.”

“We appreciate all we have learned about Mercy and ourselves during this period of due diligence,” said Reding.

“We’re impressed with Mercy’s vision for expanding affordable and high-quality care across Iowa. The board is thankful for the excellent input we received throughout the process from GRMC employees, medical staff members and the community, which contributed greatly to the board’s deliberations,” Reding said.

Mercy and GRMC spent the last half of 2015 examining whether a more integrated relationship made sense. The conversations focused primarily on a merger.

“GRMC will continue to enjoy its looser affiliation with Mercy HealthNetwork,” Reding said.

“Both GRMC and Mercy remain open to potential future discussions about partnerships that align with the mission of each organization, and those conversations will be ongoing,” Reding said.


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