Planned Parenthood of the Rochester/Syracuse Region will merge with the western New York affiliate. The new organization will be called Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York. | The merger should be effective on January 1, 2014, pending approval of state officials since Planned Parenthood's facilities are treated under law basically as hospitals, says Jim Stewart, President and CEO of the Rochester/Syracuse Region. | The merging organizations have 10 health centers between them, Stewart says, none of which will close. Combined, the centers served 36,000 patients last year — and officials expect that number to grow, Stewart says. | The organizations will undergo some administrative consolidation. Stewart is retiring, and Karen Nelson, CEO of Planned Parenthood of Western New York, will head up Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York. | Stewart says the merger will better position and prepare the organization for full implementation of the Affordable Care Act. In short, more people will have access to health care coverage, so Planned Parenthood expects to see an influx of new patients.