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ChristianaCare acquires Maryland's Union hospital


ChristianaCare is expanding its footprint. 

The Delaware Health System has acquired Union Hospital in Cecil County, Maryland along with its health system Affinity Health Alliance. It’s the first hospital ChristianaCare owns outside the state.

The addition gives ChristianaCare three hospitals—joining its locations in Wilmington and Newark. The Newark hospital is about 12 miles from Union’s location in downtown Elkton and officials say their service areas overlap.

The letter of intent for the acquisition was signed in June. But ChristianaCare COO Sharon Kurfuerst says the integration process at Union is expected to take more than a year.

“We’ll be looking at our operating processes, our clinical services and programs and really developing a thoughtful methodical integration plan that focuses on our values,” Kurfuerst said.      

Kurfuerst points out for years many from Union’s patient population have sought specialty care and other services at ChristianaCare.

“So that will continue, but we’ll be looking over the period of the integration at what other services would be appropriate for the residents of Cecil County based on need and based on what delivers the highest degree of value to them to be provided in the community hospital setting,” she said.     

The Maryland Hospital will now be known as ChristianaCare, Union Hospital. It will add 72 beds, six operating rooms and 375 physicians to Delaware’s largest health system.

ChristianaCare is the state's largest private employer with a staff of more thn 11,800. Its facilities include a Level I trauma center and a Level III neonatal intensive care unit, a comprehensive stroke center and a Gene Editing Institute. Before the addition of Union, its two hospitals totaled 1,227 beds. 

According to a ChristianaCare press release, Affinity Health’s 1,200 employees will “continue to provide high-quality care” and patients will continue to see their physicians.

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