After jointly signing a letter of intent, the health systems are now in a six to nine month process known as due diligence.
Frank Trembulak is Geisinger's executive vice President and chief operating officer. During this time, he says Danville-based Geisinger will evaluate Holy Spirit's medical operations.
"Where do they have clinical needs that their clinical offering is perhaps weak or lacking, and is there a way we can help supplement that? How do we grow their programs?" Trembulak says, offering examples of the questions they'll be working to answer.
Trembulak says the operating model would be different than its other affiliations in that the existing Holy Spirit board would continue to manage the hospital's budget and day-to-day operations.
He notes the Sisters of Christian Charity would remain involved as sponsors of Holy Spirit’s Catholic identity in perpetuity.
Trembulak says he believes Geisinger's population health delivery model will demonstrate better outcomes and reduced costs in a larger market.
The health systems would need the approval of the state Department of Health, state Attorney General and Catholic Church in order to move forward with the merger.
Danville-based Geisinger serves 44 counties in central and northeastern Pennsylvania, while Holy Spirit runs a 315-bed hospital in Camp Hill.
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