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St. Luke's to join Aspirus in health care expansion plan

WAUSAU, WI— St. Luke’s Duluth and Aspirus of Wausau, Wisconsin have signed a letter of intent to affiliate.

The comprehensive health care system will serve northeastern Minnesota, northern and central Wisconsin, and the western Upper Peninsula.

Officials say the nonprofit health systems are unified under common goals: to advance quality of care in the region, expand local and rural access to health care, and strengthen communities. The combined organization will achieve those goals through improved access to capital, unified technology platforms, increased scale and efficiencies, and a health plan focused on maximizing value for patients and employers.

The combined organization will operate 19 hospitals and 130 outpatient locations, with nearly 14,000 employees.

Nicole was born near Detroit but has lived in the U.P. most of her life. She graduated from Marquette Senior High School and attended Michigan State and Northern Michigan Universities, graduating from NMU in 1993 with a degree in English.