SoutheastHEALTH joins Mercy’s hospital system

SoutheastHEALTH announces membership with Mercy.
Published: Aug. 1, 2023 at 3:31 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 1, 2023 at 6:19 PM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - SoutheastHEALTH announced it will join St. Louis-based Mercy’s hospital system.

At a news conference on Tuesday, August 1, hospital system leaders announced the two organizations finalized details since they signed a letter of intent in January.

By affiliating with Mercy, SoutheastHEALTH would become part of one of the largest health care systems in the nation.

“Mercy joining Cape Girardeau and the greater Southeast Missouri region is a very real example of one of the ways we live the legacy of the Sisters of Mercy,” Steve Mackin, Mercy president and CEO, said in a news release. “The Sisters would answer the call of a community, and we are honored to have SoutheastHEALTH invite us to join them in serving Southeast Missouri and bring our resources to the people of this region. Together, we will positively impact the community.”

“This is an exciting day for the community, for patients and for co-workers,” Ken Bateman, SoutheastHEALTH president and CEO, added. “Bringing the two health systems together will create a regional hub for offering expanded access to health care services in Southeast Missouri and the greater region Mercy serves.”

Bateman cited the strengths that Mercy, with $8 billion in operating revenue, brings to Southeast, including increased patient access, highest quality of care as recognized by Leapfrog and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, a sophisticated operating model, lower cost of capital and significant clinical benefits.

“Keep our costs down, keep us technologically advanced, and I think that’s where the patients will benefit as will the hospital,” Dr. Kenneth Bateman said.

Mackin agreed, “Healthcare costs are increasing at a rate which employers can’t foot, it’s becoming unsustainable for individuals and for families and together we have to solve that problem,” he said.

Which is something the CEO of Southeast Health Dr. Ken Batemen believes the area needs to be a part of.

Bateman said, “Patients that leave the Cape Girardeau market, for higher level care, traditionally go to St. Louis, so we also thought for continuity of care for our community and our patients, we really wanted it to be connected to a system out of the St. Louis market.”

Mercy has 51 care locations in a four-state area including hospitals, primary and specialty care clinics, more than 30 clinical specialties and extending care for patients.

Bateman explained, “A hospital our size, does not have the resources to make those investments so for us to keep up with medicine and where it’s headed, and I believe it’s in the next five years, the things that are happening now with A-I technology and other aspects are going to enter into health care at a rapid pace.”