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SEATTLE and BOSTON, Jan. 22, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Providence St. Joseph Health announced today it has acquired HMR (Health Management Resources), an established provider of clinically proven weight-loss programs, from Merck, a global health care company.

The addition of a comprehensive weight management service to Providence St. Joseph Health's suite of health services is the latest example of the non-profit health organization's efforts to improve the health and well-being of patients and communities.

"We are pursuing innovative ways and partnerships to transform health care by keeping people healthy, and making our services more convenient, accessible and affordable for all," says Michael Waters, MHA, Chief Executive, Ambulatory Care Network, Providence St. Joseph Health. "HMR's patient-centric vision and clinically proven approach to generating lifestyle change, especially in a population that can be difficult to treat, make it a great fit for our organization."

Obesity rates have been on the rise across the United States, despite greater awareness of associated health issues and diseases from poorer mental health to diabetes to certain cancers. Today, 71.6 percent of U.S. adults age 20 and older are overweight or obese, while 39.8 percent are obese, according to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Health Statistics.

"Nearly one million adult patients who receive care in Providence St. Joseph Health medical groups and clinics are identified as overweight or obese," adds Waters. "We are committed to tackling the obesity epidemic in the U.S. by offering comprehensive support and care to the people we are privileged to serve."

Since 1983, HMR's diet and lifestyle change program has been offered with medical supervision in hospitals, universities, and medical centers across the U.S., and is now also available as an at-home option with digital support tools and weekly group phone coaching.

According to HMR President Len Tacconi, HMR's specialty is using behavior-change techniques to help very overweight patients learn the lifestyle skills that matter most for better health and quality of life. "Providence St. Joseph Health is a perfect fit for HMR," notes Tacconi. "Both organizations are focused on preventive health care, and are committed to high-quality, compassionate care that can make a real difference to the health and quality of life of the people we serve."

A relationship between Providence St. Joseph Health and HMR has existed for several years. HMR operates clinics inside three PSJH facilities, while PSJH refers its caregivers to HMR for weight management support and care as part of its employee wellness program.

About Providence St. Joseph Health (soon to be known as Providence)
Providence St. Joseph Health is a national, not-for-profit Catholic health system comprising a diverse family of organizations and driven by a belief that health is a human right. With 51 hospitals, 829 physician clinics, senior services, supportive housing and many other health and educational services, the health system and its partners employ more than 119,000 caregivers serving communities across seven states – Alaska, California, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas and Washington with system offices based in Renton, Wash., and Irvine, Calif. Starting in June 2020, Providence St. Joseph Health will transition to a new brand, with the word as Providence as the name and the St. Joseph Health cross as the logo.

About HMR
HMR's mission is to help people lose a lot of weight quickly while learning how to make lasting healthier lifestyle changes. HMR programs are available in person or at home, and include a structured diet, lifestyle education, and an emphasis on long-term weight and health management.

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