Hospital forms joint venture with health system


The Covenant HealthCare Main Campus in Saginaw. Courtesy Mary Free Bed

A local hospital has signed a partnership agreement to form a 50-50 joint venture with a Michigan health system.

Saginaw-based Covenant HealthCare is entering the 32-hospital alliance formed by Grand Rapids-based Mary Free Bed, a rehabilitation hospital.

Working together, the organizations will bring advanced rehabilitation care to Saginaw and the Great Lakes bay area.

Leaders of Covenant HealthCare believed “the time was right” to expand and enhance rehabilitation services. They looked “extensively” at options and selected Mary Free Bed as a rehabilitation partner.

Specialists from Mary Free Bed will share expertise, educational programs and research opportunities to expand and enhance services at Covenant.

“We’re truly becoming a statewide provider headquartered here in Grand Rapids,” said Kent Riddle, CEO, Mary Free Bed.

Riddle said the partnership is consistent with the organization’s goal of expanding services, which he said “increases and improves the level of good rehabilitation” in other communities.

“Covenant is an organization with parallel values and a reputation for providing outstanding care,” Riddle said. “We’re thrilled to expand our services to Saginaw through this partnering.”

The organizations are also exploring plans to design and construct a new free-standing center in Saginaw. In the meantime, the current inpatient rehabilitation area will be updated.

“This partnership underscores Covenant’s focus on our patients’ needs and the needs of their families,” said Ed Bruff, president and CEO, Covenant HealthCare. “Patients and their families travel across the state to receive the advanced inpatient rehabilitation care that Mary Free Bed so wonderfully delivers. We are excited to see what this partnership will bring to patients in our community.”


Covenant HealthCare is a health system with more than 4,800 employees and a 642-bed hospital.

Mary Free Bed

Mary Free Bed is a rehabilitation hospital that works with children and adults who have experienced brain injuries, strokes, spinal cord injuries, multiple traumas, amputations, cancer and other diagnoses.

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