First of four listening sessions held on proposed Fairview Health-Sanford merger

January 12, 2023

ST. PAUL, Minn.–Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison held the first of several listening sessions on the proposed Fairview-Sanford merger on Tuesday in St. Paul.

Sanford President and CEO Bill Gassen said bringing the two systems together will benefit all of Minnesota patients and their communities. Fairview President and CEO James Hereford said Sanford’s dedication to their community and patients underscores why they are the right partner for them and the state of Minnesota.

Gassen said he’s eager to identify how a combined Sanford/Fairview system can work with the U of M to expand its reach and academic mission.

Opponents appeared to outnumber supporters.

Ann Jones, a retired nurse who worked at the University of Minnesota Hospital said it looks more like a takeover than a merger.

ICU nurse Jessica Rosenberg said Gov. Kristi Noem canceled a contract South Dakota-based Sanford had to use federal funds for transgender support groups.

“I’m concerned that Minnesotans will be affected by her decisions, and as a citizen of the state of Minnesota I do not have any ability to vote in South Dakota and affect her decisions,” Rosenberg said.

Other listening sessions are scheduled for January 17th in Bemidji, January 25th in Worthington and January 31st in Grand Rapids.