Mather Hospital admins have signed on the dotted line to become the 23rd hospital in the Northwell Health network.

A signing ceremony was held Thursday, Dec. 21, inside the hospital in Port Jefferson.

Northwell Health, which runs four other other hospitals in Suffolk County, is the largest healthcare provider and private employer in New York State.

And in January, the healthcare merger with Mather will be in full effect.

“In my view, you will be witnessing, perhaps, the most significant moment since we opened our doors in December of 1929,” said Mather’s chairman, Kenneth Jacoppi.

Jacoppi signed a letter of intent to join Northwell in July.

Over the last year, Mather Hospital did its due diligence in exploring other options before joining the state’s largest healthcare system, officials there said.

“We are doing this for really one reason, and one reason only, and that is so that we can continue our chartered course of our voyage to excellence to become the best community hospital in New York State,” said Mather Hospital board president Kenneth Roberts.

In the ceremony, Northwell’s president and CEO, Michael Dowling, said new investments and programs will be added to the Port Jefferson hospital.

“We are excited about this. This is a wonderful new beginning… We can help each other do better,” he said.

Top: (L-R) Top row: Mark Claster, Northwell Health’s chairman, with Kenneth Jacoppi, Mather Hospital’s chairman. Bottom row: Michael Dowling, president and CEO of Northwell Health, and Kenneth Roberts, Mather Hospital’s board president. (Credit: Nicholas Esposito) 

Mather Hospital and Northwell Health officials signing merger papers. (Credit: Nicholas Esposito)