Portland, Ore. — Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) and Legacy Health have signed a nonbinding letter of intent to combine. The move aims to establish a comprehensive healthcare system that will provide high-quality essential healthcare services to patients across Oregon, the Pacific Northwest, and beyond.

The boards of directors of both OHSU and Legacy have unanimously approved the letter of intent, marking the initial phase of the transaction process that will see Legacy become a part of OHSU. OHSU, a public corporation established under Oregon law, is known for its commitment to teaching, healing, and discovery. In contrast, Legacy is a local nonprofit health system driven by the mission of improving the health of its communities.

The collaboration between OHSU and Legacy is set to leverage their complementary strengths, creating a robust healthcare system with a strong public service orientation. OHSU brings to the table its expertise in serving complex patient needs, administering statewide health care training and education programs, and conducting cutting-edge research. Meanwhile, Legacy contributes its extensive experience in providing high-quality community-based care through its network of hospitals, clinics, and outpatient facilities.

The combined health care system, boasting over 32,000 employees, 100-plus locations, including 10 hospitals, and over 3 million patient visits annually, will hold the distinction of being the largest employer in the Portland metro area. The focus will remain steadfast on bolstering the region’s leadership in patient- and community-centric health care, education, research, and innovation.

Notably, the leadership teams from both OHSU and Legacy will play active roles in shaping the strategic direction of the merged entity. The primary commitment remains serving communities while prioritizing high-quality care, expanding community-based and digital care offerings, and fostering a conducive environment for education and training in the healthcare sector.

The unified efforts of OHSU and Legacy are dedicated to attracting, engaging, and supporting a top-tier healthcare workforce by investing in essential tools, technologies, education, and developmental initiatives. This commitment ensures the growth and well-being of team members, contributing to the delivery of exceptional care and services.

Kathryn Correia, President, and CEO of Legacy Health, underlined the shared mission, stating, “Our mission is to provide good health for our people, our patients, our communities, and our world. By combining with OHSU, we will expand our ability to deliver on our mission.”

As part of the agreement, OHSU has committed to a capital investment of approximately $1 billion over a decade, primarily through bond offerings. This investment will support primary- and community-based services within the combined system, enabling the expansion of clinical programs, technology solutions, and innovative care models.

The partnership also addresses critical community healthcare needs and disparities through the establishment of a new independent foundation. This foundation, fueled by Legacy’s net cash and investments, will focus on promoting overall well-being and addressing healthcare inequalities, including social determinants of health and behavioral health.

The organizations are diligently working towards a definitive agreement in the coming months. The transaction is anticipated to conclude in 2024, pending regulatory review and customary closing conditions.

About OHSU Oregon Health & Science University stands as Oregon’s preeminent public academic health center, devoted exclusively to advancing health sciences. With a focus on disease prevention, education, and patient care, OHSU is renowned for its cutting-edge research, preparing future health professionals, and extending health services to vulnerable populations. Based in Portland, OHSU secures substantial research funding and offers a wide array of health services while contributing to community welfare.

About Legacy Health Legacy Health is a locally owned, nonprofit health system driven by its mission to enhance the health of the community. Through an extensive range of health services, Legacy addresses the needs of patients across age groups, spanning from wellness and urgent care to specialized children’s care and advanced medical centers. By collaborating with partners, Legacy aims to address critical issues such as housing and mental health, aspiring to elevate the overall health and well-being of the region.

For more information about Legacy Health, visit www.legacyhealth.org.

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