On March 28, 1897 the Sister Servants of the Holy Heart of Mary with the support of the entire community dedicated Kankakee's first hospital at the corner of Merchant and Fifth avenues. The 11-bed facility was originally known as Emergency Hospital and served 101 patients the first year.
The sisters' mission of bringing the healing and life-giving presence of Jesus Christ to the community, and of witnessing to the values of faith, self giving, family love, service to the poor, justice and dignity of person still exists today at St. Mary's. This time line beginning in 1895 will share with you some of the events that have taken place at Emergency/St. Mary's Hospital. A special "Thank You" to the sisters, the community and the many employees and physicians throughout the years that have dedicated their lives and talents to ensure the St. Mary's mission continue.
The hospital served 101 patients, had 69 operations and reported 8 deaths. There were 26 charity cases in the first year. (25%) The patient count was listed as: 52 Americans , 24 Canadians, 11 Germans, 5 Irish, 2 Poles, 2 Africans, 1 Italian, 1 Swede, 1 Belgian, 1 Scotsman, 1 Swiss.
A committee is formed by Fr. Paradis to bring health care to the Community. The effort to raise funds to build a community hospital begins.
March 28, 1897
"Emergency Hospital" opens its doors on the 29th. First patient, Mike Andrews is admitted on the 30th. Dr. Lee is the attending physician.
The first addition is constructed. The hospital now has 24 beds.
Second addition is built, second OR is opened. The roof raised to accommodate-this was considered "ingenious" construction. Elevator & X-Ray added).
Ground broken for Fifth Avenue Wing. Total cost: $150,000 Opened in 1922 with three stories.
Hospital Silver Anniversary. Opened School of Nursing with 8 students; 5 sisters, 3 lay persons.
Clinical Lab & Pharmacy opens. Run by one of the first female pharmacists in the state of Illinois: Sr. Emerentia.
Hospital Medical Staff organizes. Dr. Hamilton first Chief of Medical Staff. Dr. L.D. Moorehead of Loyola University School of Medicine, Chicago; served as Advisor.
Hospital name changed to "St. Mary's Hospital". Approved as a "Class A" facility by the American College of Surgeons and by The Catholic Hospital Association. Physicians from various specialties available.
Construction of fourth & fifth floors in the Avenue Wing. Now 150+ beds.
St. Mary's fully approved by the American College of Surgeons. St. Mary's Hospital got highest rating in the Nation. The depression causes a hospital debt of $310,000 but was erased by a show of community support & caring.
National Hospital Week celebrated with the Community. Tours of their hospital were given to the community.
Quadruplet babies born. One dies at birth. Parents are Virgil & Bertha Deschand. The sisters care for the babies for free, giving them shelter through a harsh winter. Community applauds the sisters giving effort.
Fifty-seven year old WWI Veteran dies at St. Mary's after being cared for by the sisters and living at the hospital for 27 years. Admitted in 1919 after crippling car accident. Repaired clocks/watches to pass time here.
Golden Jubilee 80,081 patients to date 186 beds 40 Bassinets Radio stations broadcast a celebration mass. Big community event. 4,382 operations 226 nursing grads.
St. Mary's Hospital opens first civilian blood bank in state of Illinois. Huge community effort. Many went as one large group to donate and began blood supply.
St. Mary's Auxiliary organized with 19 members. First president is Mrs. Richard Harrigett. First purchase was for equipment in the OB unit. A membership drive brought the Auxiliary up to 66 members. First duties: to staff the reception desk & the gift cart during visiting hours
100 patient beds added. Second nurse's residence completed. Auditorium also completed in the construction project.
1,770 babies born at St. Mary's. New record.
Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organization is established. St. Mary's earns first Full JCAHO Accreditation.
The first community fund drive for the hospital takes place. One third of the total cost of the new Court Street Wing was raised.
St. Claire Wing opened. New chapel open in time for Holy Week.
Cobalt Unit opened for cancer therapy. New OB department opened. Reported that since 1897, 42,000 babies have been born at St. Mary's.
First lay administrator hired Joe McGovern.
St. Mary's celebrates its 70th anniversary. 261 beds 40 cribs 22 sisters 70 physicians 20 dentists 600+ employees
St. Mary's establishes 24-hour ER services. St. Mary's hosts program sponsored by the Illinois Academy of General Practice. Over 600 physicians from around the state attended to hear instructors from five Chicago medical schools. St. Mary's Hospital participated in first County Disaster Drill.
St. Mary's Hospital opens new coronary care unit, 5 beds.1971St. Mary's installs a Picker Gastrix X-Ray unit. First of its kind in the nation. Unit had the first remote console for controlling function/testing. Closed circuit television provided technicians with views of the examinations.
First full-time medical director appointed-Dr. Reinhold Schuller from Herscher. City of Kankakee closes Fifth Avenue for construction of St. Mary's Pavilion. St. Mary's Hospital first state designated area wide trauma center. St. Mary's Hospital begins Home Health Care service.
West wing drawing is previewed. 290 beds, a $10 million project. Four stories. Diagnostic/Ancillary Services and Inpatient rooms. St. Mary's EMT Training program begins. Ninety persons graduate from program.
Pastoral Care officially opens. Men enter the ranks as hospital volunteers. Dads allowed in delivery rooms.
Renal Dialysis Unit opens with four machines in operation. Only unit in area.
West Pavilion is opened and dedicated. In the first 80 years, St. Mary's has cared for 400,000 patients.
Peritoneal Dialysis Unit opens. Outpatient surgery is streamlined to allow patients to enter and leave the hospital the same day for many procedures.
St. Mary's celebrates 85 years of service. ServantCor established as Parent Corporation for health care and for-profit institutions.
St. Mary's introduces new logo, circle with cross. Speakers' Bureau formed Adult Day Care and Cardiac Rehab open. Linear Accelerator installed-latest in Cancer Treatment.1986First building in MedCentre Network (Kankakee MedCentre West) built on corner of Court Street & Fifth Avenue. Trauma Center certified as the area's hemophilia treatment center.
New Birthing Center opens.
Bradley Rehabilitation Center is opened. The Health Connection opens as a link for St. Mary's Outreach programs with the community.
St. Mary's new SICU is dedicated and opens for patient care early in 1994.
St. Mary's introduces occupational health services to the Kankakee area through HealthCor. Kankakee's first integrated care network (KICN) is formed through a partnership of Kankakee Affiliated Physicians and St. Mary's Hospital.
The Regional Cancer Center opens, Illinois Neurosurgery and Spine Network brings extensive neurological services to our area.
Kankakee's MedCentre East opens introducing St. Mary's Community Wellness Center and new Cardiac Rehab Services.
St. Mary's continues bringing health programs and services to our community by initiating Health 2000, a community health stewardship focused on identifying future health needs.
St. Mary's Hospital becomes part of Provena Health.
New MICU opened at Provena St. Mary's, featuring state-of-the-art monitoring technology and two patient-family suites (the first of its kind in Kankakee County).
George N. Miller, Jr. named President/CEO of Provena St. Mary's Hospital.
The Provena eICU Connection is launched for all of the ICU beds. Critical care physicians and nurses, working in conjunction with the medical staff in each facility, monitor ICU patients from a remote network 24 hours a day.
Provena St. Mary's Hospital renovated the Family Birthing Center.