St. Croix Hospice launched two de novos this week, one in Newton, Iowa, and a second in Green Bay, Wisconsin. These additions are among a spate of new locations for the Minnesota-headquartered hospice provider.
In 2022 through February of this year, the company launched six other de novos, located in Wisconsin, Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota, Minnesota and Kansas. All told St. Croix Hospice cares for over 4,000 patients from more than 60 locations in 10 Midwestern states.
The new Iowa location will serve a predominantly rural population, which historically have been underserved.
“Health care providers have been closing their doors across rural America, and Iowa is no exception,” Kim Kirschbaum, St. Croix Hospice statewide executive director for Iowa said in a statement. “With fewer facilities and agencies to care for our aging population at the end of life, it is critical that agencies like ours step up to fill those gaps when we can.”
Close to 560,000 seniors live in Iowa, according to the Iowa Department of Aging. In 2019, people 65 or older represented 17.5% of the state’s population.
A little more than 21,000 Medicare patients in Iowa elected hospice in 2021, according to the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). California saw the highest utilization at 156,000 that year, and Alaska the lowest at slightly above 1,200.
With this de novo, St. Croix Hospice covers 83 counties of Iowa’s 99 counties.
“St. Croix Hospice has been serving these Iowa communities for many years, but by positioning a new branch location in Newton, we have shortened the response time by our clinicians which in turn improves access for patients and their families who need hospice care,” Kirschbaum said.
The Green Bay office is the company’s second Wisconsin de novo this year, bringing its total footprint in the state to 15 locations serving 65 counties.
Adults 65 and older accounted for 17.5% of Wisconsin’s overall population during 2019, the U.S. Census Bureau reported. Over 35,000 people received hospice care in the Badger State in 2021, according to CMS.
“Our continued growth in the state of Wisconsin is in response to the consistent need for hospice care throughout a state where a quarter of the population is projected to be age 65 and older by 2040,” Rick Risler, St. Croix Hospice statewide executive director for Wisconsin said in a statement. “The need for excellent health care agencies to care for and support the aging population will continue to rise, and St. Croix Hospice will be there in communities like Green Bay to meet that need now and in the future.”
St. Croix Hospice, which is backed by the private equity firm H.I.G. Capital, is also an active acquirer.
The company last October moved into Indiana with its acquisition of Adaptive Hospice. Other recent deals include the acquisition of Michigan-based Corpore Sano Hospice as well as Illinois-based Lexington Hospice Care last summer. Financial terms for these transactions were undisclosed.