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Thursday, June 16, 1994 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Puget Sound Newswatch

Providence, Franciscan To Merge

The Seattle-based Sisters of Providence Health System and the Tacoma-based Franciscan Health System have announced plans to place all of their primary-care clinics under one administrative umbrella, forming one of the largest primary-care groups in the Puget Sound area.

Providence employs 110 primary-care physicians at 17 clinics in King County. Franciscan employs 30 physicians at three Pierce County clinics.

Both groups operate hospitals and long-term-care facilities that will remain under separate administrations.

William Arnold, senior vice president for hospital and health services at Franciscan, said the alliance will allow consolidation of their resources and an increase in their share of the health-care market.

By creating a unified administration for a large number of physicians, the envisioned primary-care group can offer patients lower costs than can traditional fee-for-service practitioners, he said.

Providence administrator Raymond Crerand said the planned alliance fits in with larger trends in health care at both the state and national levels.

Copyright (c) 1994 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.

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