Sanford Health halts merger talks after departure of CEO Kelby Krabbenhoft

(Source: Joe Ahlquist/The Argus Leader via AP, File)
Published: Dec. 4, 2020 at 5:52 PM CST
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - Sanford Health and Intermountain Healthcare announced today that Sanford Health has indefinitely suspended conversations about a planned merger.

This decision follows the recent departure of Kelby Krabbenhoft, president and CEO of Sanford Health for the prior 25 years. The Sanford Health Board of Trustees last week appointed Bill Gassen as the organization’s new president and CEO.  Given the leadership change, Sanford Health has decided to pause current merger and acquisition activity while they address other organizational needs.

Gassen said, “With this leadership change, it’s an important time to refocus our efforts internally as we assess the future direction of our organization.” We continue to prioritize taking care of our patients, our people, and the communities we serve as we look to shape our path forward.”

“We have great respect for Intermountain Healthcare, Dr. Marc Harrison, and their leadership team and look forward to continuing to learn from each other,” said Gassen.

“We are disappointed but understand the recent leadership change at Sanford Health has influenced their priorities,” said Marc Harrison, M.D., president and CEO of Intermountain Healthcare. “There’s much to admire about the work that Sanford Health is doing. We continue to share a strong vision for the future of healthcare.”

Sanford Health, one of the largest health systems in the United States, is dedicated to the integrated delivery of health care, genomic medicine, senior care and services, global clinics, research and affordable insurance. Headquartered in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, the organization includes 46 hospitals, 1,400 physicians and more than 200 Good Samaritan Society senior care locations in 26 states and 10 countries. Learn more about Sanford Health’s transformative work to improve the human condition at or Sanford Health News.

Intermountain Healthcare serves the healthcare needs of people in Utah, Idaho, and Nevada. It is an integrated, not-for-profit health system headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, with 225 clinics, a medical group, 24 hospitals (one that is virtual), homecare, telehealth, health insurance plans, and other services. It is one of the nation’s top five health systems for innovation and for providing high-quality care at sustainable costs. Visit for more information.

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