St. Croix Hospice, a portfolio company of the Chicago-based investment firm the Vistria Group, has opened a new location in Humboldt, Iowa that will serve patients in 10 counties in that state.
With the establishment of this de novo, Minnesota-headquartered St. Croix will serve more than 75% of Iowa counties. Iowa ranks fifth in the nation in hospice utilization with 56.6% of Medicare decedents electing hospice care, according to the National Hospice & Palliative Organization. Utah leads the nation in utilization at 59.4%.
St. Croix has been on a steady growth trajectory in recent years, and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has not slowed their expansion.
“Hospice utilization has not diminished during the COVID-19 pandemic; to the contrary we have seen a steady demand,” said Andrew Mayo, M.D., chief medical officer for St. Croix Hospice. “We continue to serve patients in private homes, assisted living and skilled nursing facilities while following the [the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention’s] personal protective equipment guidelines for all patient care.”
St. Croix has launched seven de novos in Wisconsin, Nebraska, Iowa and Minnesota during the past 12 months. In March, the company entered the Missouri market via the purchase of Serenity Care Hospice in Harrison, Mo., for an undisclosed amount. Serenity Care Hospice serves about 100 patients daily in five Missouri counties.
In August of last year, the company also acquired Brookfield, Wis.-based Hometown Hospice & Homecare for an undisclosed sum. Hometown consists of three hospice and home health operations in eastern Wisconsin.
The new Iowa location is equipped to provide expanded telehealth services that have become necessary during the COVID-19 emergency.
“The ability to provide care via telehealth is incredibly important during the COVID-19 outbreak,” Mayo said. “We know the elderly and hospice patients are particularly at great risk from this virus, so our expert care teams are working hard with patients, their families and our partner residential facilities to provide hospice care while keeping people safe.”