In November 2017, the Columbia-based Palmetto Health hospital system merged with Greenville Health System. Now, the two systems operate as Upstate and Midlands affiliates.
To reflect the new corporate entity, the hospital system beginning in 2019 will have a new name — Prisma. However campuses and hospitals will keep their present names, like Baptist and Richland in Columbia, Tuomey in Sumter, Greenville Memorial and Laurens County.
“This is an once-in-a-lifetime moment for our organization,” Prisma Health Co-Chief Executive Officer Charles D. Beaman Jr. said in a news release. “We’re poised for great change.”
Beaman previously was CEO of Palmetto Health. He now shares chief executive duties at Prisma with former Greenville Health CEO Michael C. Riordan.
The name change was needed to create a unified culture and unified brand, the release said.
The new Prisma Health name “reflects the diverse, multifaceted nature” of the company, the release said.
“Officials believe the name and distinctive logo distinguish Prisma Health from traditional health care systems and signal its intent to look at health, and health care, in a completely new way,” the release said.
The present hospital systems will drop their names early in 2019, including their names and logos, the release said.
Palmetto Health-USC Medical Group will be renamed Prisma Health-USC Medical Group in late 2019.
Lynn Bailey, a Columbia-based health care economist, said the new Prisma name “makes me giggle.”
“I wonder how much they paid the firm who invented that,” she said.
But Bailey added that such nonregional names are a trend for big and growing hospital systems.
“It’s an OK name,” as a business handle, she said. “It reflects the business of health care. If you tie yourself to an area or a region, you are kind of limiting yourself.”
She noted that in February the Charlotte-based Carolinas HealthCare System changed its name to Atrium Health. The name has not completely taken off in the Queen City.
“But this is what we’re doing in health care,” she said.
Other new names for health care systems are Anthem, Appollo, MedStar and Qventus, she said.
The Palmetto Health-Greenville Health System merger formed the largest health system in South Carolina with 13 hospitals and 1.2 million patients annually, the companies said at the time.
The combined companies were expected to generate $3.9 billion in annual net revenue and become the largest private employer in South Carolina with more than 28,000 health care workers and 2,800 physicians.