AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) — Augusta University Health System and Wellstar Health System based in Atlanta are announcing their intent to partner together.

The proposed partnership, subject to regulatory approval, would “expand Augusta University’s educational and research missions,” would allow Wellstar to create an affiliation with Medical College of Georgia, and would make Augusta University Health System part of the Wellstar Health System.

“AUHS, Augusta University, and the Wellstar Health System have a shared mission to solve Georgia’s health care challenges,” University System of Georgia Chancellor Sonny Perdue said. “By joining forces and working together, we can leverage Wellstar’s clinical platform and leading-edge systems to support patients while providing more opportunities for students to learn, train and care for residents in local communities across Georgia.”

While details within the proposed partnership are still being ironed out, AU Health says the partnership would allow for facility improvements, expanded access to healthcare across the state, brand-new hospital and medical office buildings in Columbia County, address physician shortages across the state, and could even lead to a new teaching campus at Wellstar Kennestone Hospital in Atlanta.

“Providing health care has never been as dynamic and complex as it is today, and this partnership with the Georgia-based, not-for-profit Wellstar Health System would enable us to extend our mission of improving health through excellence in patient care, education and research for the benefit of Georgians,” said Brooks A. Keel, PhD, acting chief executive officer of Augusta University Health System and president of Augusta University.

A similar partnership was made ten months ago between Piedmont Healthcare, also based in Atlanta, and the unrelated University Health Care System in Augusta which merged University into Piedmont.

Read the full news release below: