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Kaiser Permanente to Acquire Group Health
Group Health Cooperative announced today that it will begin the process of being acquired by Kaiser Permanente. The deal was introduced to Group Health members in an emailed announcement this morning.
At Group Health, we never stop looking for better ways to serve you. We are proud to announce that we have signed an agreement to be acquired by Kaiser Permanente, a nationally recognized health care leader. ... Kaiser shares our values and a philosophy that focuses on their members' total health. Together we can better serve our mission and you for years to come.
Explaining the deal as a response to the changing world of healthcare, Group Health, one of Tacoma's larger employers with approximately 620 employees in 2015, says the deal will mean they can keep premiums down while upgrading facilities. The announcement goes on to promise that Group Health members would keep their existing doctors.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the two organizations have had longstanding ties, similar approaches to health care, and have discussed a merger since as far back as the late 1990s. Kaiser, with revenues of $56.4 billion last year, is significantly larger than Group Health which had $3.5 bilion in revenue. The 600,000 Group Health members will quickly accelerate Kaiser's expansion into Washington State.
Proceeds from the acquisition will go to establish a new Group Health Community Foundation, with the somewhat vague description of being "focused on responding directly to Washington's families and empowering health for all."
The deal is still subject to approval by voting members and regulators. Tacoma Group Health members can learn more at a town hall meeting scheduled for later this month.
Group Health Town Hall Schedule
Thursday, December 17, 2015 - 3:30 pm to 5:00 pm
Greater Tacoma Convention Center, Room 318
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