CHRISTUS Health Announces Expansion into Colombia

In December, CHRISTUS Health announced big news.  A signed agreement with Coomeva Cooperativa Medica (Coomeva) in Colombia will expectedly lead to Definitive Agreements in early 2016.



Pictured Above Left to Right:  Jeff Puckett, CHRISTUS Health’s Executive Vice President of Strategic Alliances and Group Operations and Ernie Sadau, CHRISTUS Health’s Chief Executive Officer as they sign the agreement.


Coomeva Signing Photo

Pictured above from Left to Right: Mauricio Castillo, International Business Development Director; Dr. Gilberto Quinche, General Manager Health Division, Dra. Maria Eugenia Perez, President of the Board; Seated, Dr. Alfredo Arana, CEO.

Discussions began two years ago with the well-respected 50-year-old company based in Cali, Colombia with assets of approximately $2.6 billion.


“CHRISTUS Health has a strong Latin America growth strategy, and we have searched for the best partners to help us expand our commitment to hope and healing across Latin America,” said Ernie Sadau, CEO, CHRISTUS Health.   “Coomeva is an ideal partner for us in Colombia, because it is fiercely committed to the best health care outcomes for its members and the communities it serves since its beginning as a cooperative company.”


The agreement proposes that CHRISTUS Health assume partial ownership of various companies within the Coomeva organization, including:

  • 1. An equal ownership stake in and management of Sinergia, a health care provider network that serves members from Coomeva’s own health insurance plans, as well as many other plans. Also included are two wholly-owned hospitals, two partially-owned hospitals, the largest home care company in the country and 150 ambulatory facilities in nearly every community in Colombia.

Clinica Farallones Alta

  • 2. The agreement will include the health care-related operations and management of Coomeva Servicios Administrativos (CSA) a centralized services and administration company within Coomeva. CSA includes services like human resources, group purchasing, payroll, tax services, and a large contact center that receives an average of 7 million phone calls a month and has one of the lowest employee turnover rates in the industry. CSA also includes an Information Management Company called Unidad Tecnologia Informatica (UTI), which provides sophisticated proprietary software used by all of Coomeva, including the Health Division.


  •  3. A minority ownership stake in Coomeva EPS, a health insurance company that contracts with the Colombian government. Colombia has universal coverage for its 47 million residents. Although this program has expanded its offering to all Colombians, today 24 million are covered under the EPS program. Of these 24 million, Coomeva serves 3.7 million Colombians, almost 15 percent.


  1. A minority ownership stake in Coomeva Medicina Prepagada, a private health insurance company that contracts with individuals and employers to provide private health insurance nationwide. Today, Coomeva has 265,000 lives out of a total market of approximately 1.0 million lives.


“With CHRISTUS Health’s interest in working with Coomeva as a strategic partner, Coomeva will have an ally that has great knowledge in the health sector, especially in the area as a provider, which will offer an international long-term vision, ” said Alfredo Arana Velasco, Executive Chairman of Grupo Coomeva.

“We are impressed at how Coomeva delivers truly community-based health care to its insurance beneficiaries and their communities by focusing on improving health through low-tech and high-tech means,” Sadau said.  “We are enthusiastic about this next step in our relationship and are looking forward to working more closely together.  We are excited about this opportunity to partner with Coomeva to extend the healing ministry of Jesus Christ into Colombia.”