Union Hospital is officially a part of ChristianaCare, as ChristianaCare and Affinity Health Alliance officials today announced a final agreement that integrates Affinity Health Alliance and its subsidiaries into Delaware’s largest, most innovative health care provider.

“ChristianaCare and Union Hospital have long shared a deep commitment to serving the community,” said Janice E. Nevin, M.D., MPH, ChristianaCare president and CEO. “This integration will advance our ability to make a positive impact on the health of every person in every community we serve. That includes providing high-quality, safe and affordable hospital care when people need it — and it also includes a wide array of services, partnerships and technology to help people achieve their best health and manage chronic conditions where they live, work and play.

“We’re incredibly excited to welcome the caregivers of Union Hospital as we join together in service to the greater Cecil County community.”

Union Hospital becomes ChristianaCare’s third hospital, alongside Christiana Hospital in Newark, Del., and Wilmington Hospital in Wilmington, Del. While Union is the first ChristianaCare hospital across state lines, the two organizations overlap in the geographic areas they serve, and they have a history of collaboration in meeting the clinical service needs of the Cecil County community.

Today’s ChristianaCare is much more than a hospital system. ChristianaCare has become a leader in value-based care and population health, leveraging data and new technology to provide the right care, at the right time and place, to everyone it serves. ChristianaCare’s unique CareVio care coordination platform uses real-time data, machine learning and analytics to enable care teams to reach out proactively to patients and help them more effectively manage chronic health conditions—and often prevent the need for emergency care or hospitalization.

“This is an exciting new day for our employees, our providers and our community,” said Rich Szumel, M.D., president, ChristianaCare, Cecil County. “We are joining one of the premier, forward-thinking health systems in the country, enabling us to grow, innovate and make an impact on the health of our community in transformative new ways.”

Union Hospital operations will continue without significant changes or interruptions as the integration process begins. All services and programs managed by Union Hospital and Affinity Health are continuing, and patients will continue to see their same physicians and providers at their current locations. Affinity Health’s 1,200 employees will continue to provide high-quality care and an exceptional experience with a warm, personal touch.

Union Hospital will now be known as ChristianaCare, Union Hospital, and the campus, which houses the hospital and other health services, will be known as ChristianaCare, Cecil County.

While the integration process between the two organizations will begin immediately, the process is expected to take a year or more.

“As we bring our organizations together, our number-one focus will be on providing uninterrupted high-quality, safe care to the people we serve, and on building relationships among our caregivers in an environment of collaboration and respect,” said Sharon Kurfuerst, Ed.D., OTR/L, FACHE, FAOTA, FABC, chief operating officer of ChristianaCare. “Together, we will examine our operating processes and our clinical services, and develop a thoughtful, methodical integration plan that builds on our values-driven culture and our shared commitment to excellence.”

Both ChristianaCare and Affinity Health Alliance are not-for-profit health care organizations.

On June 20, 2019, ChristianaCare and Affinity Health Alliance announced that they signed a letter of intent for Union Hospital and its affiliates to join ChristianaCare. With the signing of the letter of intent, the organizations entered a period of exclusive negotiation and due diligence. These processes concluded successfully, leading to the signing of a final agreement with an effective date of Jan. 1, 2020.