Formed to advance and strengthen the Catholic health ministry into the 21st century, Catholic Health Initiatives is unique among health care systems in the U.S.
During the last decade, sponsors of Catholic health care ministries realized that the changing health care environment meant that greater resources would be needed to develop programs, structures and services in the next century. In early 1995, a group of Catholic health care leaders began to explore ways to preserve and strengthen the health ministry for the future.
They envisioned a national Catholic health care organization, sponsored by multiple congregations and governed by a religious-lay partnership, that would live out its mission by transforming health care delivery into integrated networks and creating new ministries to promote healthy communities. The result was the formation of Catholic Health Initiatives in 1996 through the consolidation of Catholic Health Corporation, Omaha, NE, Franciscan Health System, Aston, PA, and the Sisters of Charity Health Care Systems, Cincinnati, OH. In September 1997, the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth Health System, Bardstown, KY, consolidated with Catholic Health Initiatives and the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth became the organization’s 11th sponsoring congregation.
The organization is committed to creating new models of health care, based on collaborative relationships and partnerships with community groups, agencies, and other health care organizations. The hallmark of Catholic Health Initiatives is its Mission and Ministry Fund that devotes financial resources to improve the health of communities served by its facilities. Through this national healthy communities commitment, hospitals and health facilities throughout the organization are developing unique programs to address the root causes of serious social and health issues - and create solutions for the longterm.