Attorney General Holds Public Hearing on Proposed Fairview Merger

Updated: 09/18/2013 3:37 PM By: Tim Sherno

Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson called a public hearing at the State Capitol today to hear comments and concerns regarding a potential merger between Sanford Health of South Dakota, and Fairview Health Services.

Swanson says she has questions, "Is there a good match and is it really in the best interest of the people of the patients of Minnesota." 

Swanson says Fairview's rich history and ties to Minnesota deserve a thorough discussion, "The notion that these great Minnesota assets that really only exist because the financial support and generosity goodwill of the people of Minnesota could potentially be transferred to a South Dakota organization is concerning."

Becky Nelson from Sanford Health read from a message from Sanford Health President and CEO Kelby Krabbenhoft addressing concerns that the potential merger is one-sided, "Nothing could be more inappropriate than the use of the term takeover." Executives say that Sanford and Fairview a similar sizes, and could both benefit from efficiencies that would come with merging.

Fairview acquired The University of Minnesota Hospital and clinics in 1997, so the University has a seat at the table for any talks. Mark Rotenberg, General Counsel for The University announced Sunday that the University would impose a temporary moratorium on any gifts from anyone connected with the merger discussions.

Swanson says plans on scheduling another public meeting in two weeks.