By CBS3 Staff

MARLTON, N.J. (CBS) – Two major hospital chains in South Jersey have become one after the sale of Lourdes Health System was completed. Virtua assumed ownership of Lourdes, effective Monday, in a purchase that reshapes health care in New Jersey.

Virtua takes ownership of all Lourdes facilities, including Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center in Camden, Lourdes Medical Center of Burlington County, Lourdes Medical Associates and Lourdes Cardiology Services.

Virtua owned three hospitals in Burlington County before acquiring Lourdes.

“Now we can begin the process of building a better, healthier future for the people of South Jersey,” Virtua CEO Dennis W. Pullin said. “The best interest of the community has been the driving force behind this process and it will be our cornerstone moving forward.”

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With Lourdes joining Virtua, the not-for-profit health system includes 280 care locations and over 100 buildings with more than 13,000 employees.

Virtua says it expects to deliver approximately 8,600 babies, treat 325,000 visitors in its emergency rooms and schedule upward of 600,000 outpatient appointments each year going forward.

“By investing in Lourdes, Virtua is demonstrating that it is fully committed to the people of this region and that, collectively, we are here for good,” Virtua board of trustees chairperson David Kindlick said.

Virtua and Pennsylvania-based Maxis Health System – Lourdes’ parent company – came to an agreement in June 2018.

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The sale was approved by the Superior Court of New Jersey last Tuesday.

“Although we may have grown in scope and scale,” Pullin said, “Virtua’s core principles remain the same. We look forward to welcoming our new colleagues, caring for our new patients and being a true partner in health well into the future.”