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By Caitlin Baker

St. Louis (KSDK) - Mercy Health is adding another hospital to its system with the addition of Jefferson Regional Medical Center.

The Jefferson Health System Board of Directors approved the merger Friday in a unanimous vote.

"Jefferson Regional and Mercy are a natural fit in many ways. We share a strong tradition of community-focused, compassionate care. And as our long-time neighbors in the southern part of our service area, Jefferson Regional complements and expands Mercy's already strong presence," said Donn Sorensen, regional president for Mercy in east Missouri and interim president for Jefferson Regional.

Friday, February 1 is Jefferson Regional's first day as part of Mercy. The merged hospitals are planning significant capital improvements in facilities and other program enhancements.

Mercy and Jefferson Regional Medical Center have also agreed to an investment by Mercy to create the Jefferson Memorial Community Foundation in support of health care and social needs.

The Hospital plans on changing its name from Jefferson Regional Medical Center to Mercy Hospital Jefferson in the spring.