GRAND HAVEN — Doctors employed by North Ottawa Community Health System went to work today for Mercy Health.
Under a deal the two health systems described as a “transition” that builds off of past collaborations, 20 physicians and advanced care providers and more than 60 support staff previously with the North Ottawa Medical Group became employees of Mercy Health Physician Partners.
Mercy Health also acquired hard assets from the North Ottawa Medical Group such as medical equipment and furnishings, and now rents office space at North Ottawa facilities where the doctors have practiced.
Care providers who transitioned to Mercy Health will continue practicing at their existing offices without interruption to patient care. Financial terms of the deal were undisclosed.
Coming more than two years after the two health systems signed a strategic clinical affiliation, the deal allows North Ottawa Health System to focus on the core functions of running a community hospital and related services. Through the deal, the two health systems will continue to collaborate on medical care in the market and alleviate any lingering competition in primary care.
“The resources to support (the North Ottawa Medical Group) under the old model was significant to us,” said North Ottawa President and CEO Shelleye Yaklin. “I needed a better coordinated approach to deliver that care than if we were siloed.”
The former North Ottawa doctors are now with a much-larger medical group that has greater expertise and resources needed to support and grow the practice, and can optimize costs.
In return, Mercy Health gets a larger primary care base in Ottawa County, a market that it has been targeting that last few years. Mercy Health has expanded specialty medical services such as cardiology and neurology into the Grand Haven area under the 2016 clinical affiliation with North Ottawa.
Mercy Health separately also opened a primary care practice on Holland’s north side three years ago, and is presently developing a new primary care and outpatient center in Hudsonville that opens this fall.
“This is a market where we’ve been trying to have a deeper presence,” said Mary Boyd, Mercy Health’s vice president of integration. “We want a deeper penetration in Ottawa County. It makes sense to do that with a practice that has a long history.”