Mercy Hospital in Oelwein, as well as Covenant Medical Center in Waterloo and Sartori Memorial Hospital in Cedar Falls, will be getting new owners.

Three facilities in the Wheaton Franciscan Health Network: Covenant, Sartori, and Mercy Hospital in Oelwein, will be joining the Mercy Health Network, which is based in West Des Moines.

The move is not a sale, but a transfer, and no major changes are planned at this time. The process will be complete in early 2016.

According to company officials, the Wheaton Franciscan Sisters are getting out of the health care and housing ministries, because they are older, and there are fewer of them.

Similar transfers are taking place in other states.

The transfer means the three Northeast Iowa hospitals will be part of a much larger network.

Current services, doctors, health records and appointments will not change.

Mercy Hospital in Oelwein held a groundbreaking last month for a 5,000 square foot addition to it's emergency department.