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Saint Vincent Hospital


For a moment, imagine 1875. It's 10 years beyond the end of the Civil War. Ulysses S. Grant is the U.S. president. Railroads are the central industry of the country. The American population is dominated by farmers. Erie, like most cities, has no hospital. Its 28,000 residents are cared for by a handful of doctors who have set up practice in this growing port.

But the Sisters of St. Joseph are about to make history. Already caring for orphans and teaching in local Catholic schools, they're now called to enter the ministry of health care.

For months, the Sisters canvass the city seeking donations. The community generously supports their cause, and on September 5, 1875, Erie's first medical institution – St. Vincent's Hospital – is open. It's a three-story, 12-bed hospital staffed by one surgeon and seven dedicated Sisters, who handle everything from nursing to laundry.

The Sisters' ministry to the sick began with an unfortunate accident in front of the St. Joseph orphanage in 1874. After caring for an injured man, other cases were soon brought to the Sisters, until demand became so great that Mother Agnes Spencer obtained permission from Bishop Mullen to build the hospital.

Over the next 130 years, the original building was expanded, other buildings were constructed and the health center "campus" was formed. Saint Vincent Health System grew to encompass sites such as other health care facilities and physician practices that are in the regional community. Learn more about our Mission and Vision. The following chronology highlights the 130 years of caring provided by health system associates.

Chronology 1865 – 2013 

1865 - 1900

Mother Agnes Spencer and four Sisters of Saint Joseph from Meadville establish home for orphans in Erie.

Mother Agnes Spencer (superintendent 1875 - 1882) obtains permission from Bishop Mullen to found St. Vincent's Hospital.
Erection begins in 1874 with a building cost of $7,000.

Doors of the first hospital in Erie, Pennsylvania, open. Patients cared for by Sisters and Dr. J. L. Stewart.

New operating room (18 feet x 18 feet) opens. Has hot and cold water, marble washstands, and other conveniences.

State of Pennsylvania grants charter to St. Vincent's, conferring corporate rights and duties as a nonsectarian institution under title of St. Vincent's Hospital Association.

1900 - 1925

New Old Main annex opens.
Ladies' Aid organizes (later known as St. Vincent Hospital Auxiliary).

School of Nursing established.

First intern rotates at St. Vincent Hospital.

First annex, E Building, opens, connects original hospital on West 24 Street with Old Main Building on Sassafras Street.

X-ray department established, with Dr. William Dill as the hospital's first roentgenologist.

State Department of Medical Education establishes a formal course of instruction for interns.

First Nurses' Home erected.

1925 - 1950
1939 - 40

Diagnostic building, 65-bed maternity ward, power house and laundry unit facilities open.

Hess Urological Clinic established by Dr. Elmer Hess.

St. Vincent Cancer Prevention Clinic established.

St. Vincent Hospital Laboratory School receives approval of Council of Medical Education and Hospitals of the American Medical Association for training of laboratory personnel.
Eye clinic established.


1950 - 1975

Service Building opens.

Long-range plans consist of a four-story building with accommodations for 127 beds (total capacity: 500 beds) and a completely air-conditioned surgical suite with sub-sterilizing rooms located between each pair of operating rooms. In addition, plan includes expansion of diagnostic, X-ray, physiotherapy and clinical facilities, and remodeling of business quarters.

Laboratory areas on first floor of Diagnostic Building increase to 5,000 square feet, and added facilities include a new outpatient office, waiting room, procedure room, blood donor station and autopsy room.

Medical Record Department established as a single unit.

Comptroller's Office established.

Alcoholism Counseling Center opens.
Artificial-Kidney Unit installed.

Amputee Clinic established.

Medical offices on West 25 Street planned and approved by Board of Incorporators.

1963 - 65
Two-floor Pediatric Section added to Main Building.

Rehabilitation Center opens.

Radiology Technology Program of Saint Vincent Health Center and Gannon College established.

1975 - 2000

Mary Occhipinti Cardiac and Intensive Care Unit opens on second floor of new North Building with 12 cardiac care beds and 12 intensive-care beds.

Family Practice Residency accredited.

Hemodialysis Unit and Gastroenterology Lab open.

Helipad used for the first time for a patient transfer to Saint Vincent from Elk County Hospital.

Peripheral Vascular Diagnostic Laboratory is added to the Cardiovascular Unit.

Five-bed Pediatric Intensive Care Unit opens.

Laser Unit opens, offering laser surgical procedures in gynecology and otolaryngology, and is the first of its kind in the Erie area.

Saint Vincent Foundation for Health and Human Services established.
First computer word-processing system installed.

Clifford Peterson, M.D., obstetrician, delivers his 10,000th baby.

New outpatient area opens in renovated McBrier Auditorium.

Medical Information System (MIS) introduced; Saint Vincent is one of the first hospitals to use computer technology, making patient data instantly available to authorized personnel.

Eleven sets of twins delivered within a three-month time period.

Saint Vincent becomes largest hospital in the state, recording the highest number of admissions in Pennsylvania.

Washington School, at 21 and Sassafras Streets, renovated to house School of Nursing and computer center.

Saint Vincent Health Center and Hamot Medical Center form Tri-State Regional Trauma Center.

Emergycare emergency transport service, jointly operated by Saint Vincent, Hamot and Doctor's Osteopathic Hospital, begins operation.

Erie area's largest baby, weighing 17 pounds 3 ounces, and first test-tube baby, are both born at Saint Vincent.

Laboratory services merges with outside lab services and Pathology Associates of Erie to form Associated Clinical Laboratories.

Tri-State Regional Cancer Center, jointly operated by the Saint Vincent Foundation and Hamot Health Systems, opens on West 12th Street.

Saint Vincent Outpatient Surgery Center opens on West 25 and Myrtle Streets.

The Women's Diagnostic Center at Saint Vincent opens.

The foundation is restructured and parent corporation, Saint Vincent Health System, is formed with Sr. Margaret Ann Hardner serving as president. Saint Vincent Health Center is subsidiary.

Saint Vincent is the first hospital in nation to begin testing for the National Heart Attack Risk Study.

AICD implants introduced and electrophysiology lab opens.

Outpatient Rehabilitation Center opens in mall on West 18 and Sassafras Streets.


The Saint Vincent Medical Group was formed in July. 

Board of Trustees adopts strategic initiative to develop and implement a neighborhood health initiative, and Saint Vincent begins assessing health needs of South Erie Hillside neighborhood by surveying door to door.

Project 2000 officially completed. New South Building houses maternity, intensive-care units, engineering areas, new entrance and lobby, cardio-technical services, and the laboratory.

Saint Vincent Heart Center outperforms all other hospitals in the region with more open heart surgeries, more cardiac catheterizations and interventions, and further advances in electrophysiology services, including radio-frequency ablation.

Saint Vincent Progressive Care Center opens to serve the needs of patients who are not ready to go home but still need some level of hospital care.

The Saint Vincent Surgery Center marks its 10th anniversary and another banner year as the state's busiest freestanding surgery center and one of the nation's best in patient satisfaction.

Saint Vincent Fast Track is rated well above the national mean (one standard deviation) in patient satisfaction, based on physician care, nursing care and medical outcomes

The LifeStar helicopter service, a Saint Vincent joint venture, is one of only 67 flight programs in the country to receive accreditation.

The Quality Institute of Northwestern Pennsylvania recognizes Saint Vincent Behavioral Health for inpatient care.

Westfield Memorial Hospital, a Saint Vincent affiliate, opens a new facility with new quarters for X-ray, lab, surgery and other services.

2000 - 2010

Saint Vincent is designated a world-class performer in coronary artery bypass surgery by Premier Inc.

Thirty-four members of the medical staff are recognized in The Best Doctors in America.
The Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council again confirms that Saint Vincent is the region's leading health care provider, caring for more patients than any other hospital in northwestern Pennsylvania, with charges well below the regional and state averages.

Saint Vincent and its regional partners form the Regional Heart Network to standardize care across the area and improve local access to cardiac services.

Along with local business leaders, Saint Vincent launches Project Heart Start to place AEDs (automated external defibrillators) in public locations and businesses throughout the region.

The Saint Vincent Heart Center is among the first in the nation to be accredited by the Intersocietal Commission for the Accreditation of Vascular Laboratories. Four of its cardiologists are among the first to become board certified in interventional cardiology.
The first cardiology telemedicine links are established between Saint Vincent and its partners in the Regional Heart Network.

Heart Center firsts include the Mosaic heart valve, intracoronary brachytherapy, and in-house access to a cardiologist 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Saint Vincent and its orthopedic surgeons open a joint center for total hip or knee replacement surgery and develop plans for a sports medicine center at Family First Sports Park.

Several nursing units rank in or above the 90th percentile in patient-satisfaction scores.

Angela Bontempo is promoted to President and CEO of Saint Vincent Health System.


Saint Vincent becomes the sponsor of a national disaster medical team, Erie Regional DMAT 3.

The Emergency Department remains the busiest in the region and ranks among the top 6 percent in the nation for patient satisfaction.

Saint Vincent receives Governor's Award for Safety Excellence

A new senior administrative team is assembled to implement the new vision: Saint Vincent associates and physicians will be responsible for the health care of more than one million individuals in the region, strive to be nationally recognized for setting standards of care, and be known for providing leading-edge treatment, while demonstrating compassion and excellence. Saint Vincent will partner with its affiliates and other providers to deliver a continuum of health care services to the communities we serve. We will continue to be the health network of choice as we continually improve the health and well-being of the people we serve.

Financial turnaround earns Saint Vincent its first Moody's rating.

Saint Vincent introduces the All for One initiative to continuously the workplace environment for employees.

Saint Vincent's nurse vacancy rate falls to 3 percent - well below the national average of 13 percent.

Saint Vincent implemented its first Guidelines Applied in Practice program to improve heart attack and congestive heart failure patient outcomes. Results better state averages.

A Saint Vincent cardiologist is the first in the region to use a minimally invasive technique to close a hole in the heart.

Saint Vincent cardiologists are regional pioneers the use of drug-coated stents to reduce the likelihood of restenosis in the arteries.

Saint Vincent acquires new Stealth Station® neurological navigation hardware and software that helps surgeons work with greater precision in the operating room.
Technology to detect breast cancer up to two years earlier than traditional equipment is installed at Saint Vincent.

The Women's Center at Saint Vincent is fully renovated and continues to provide excellence in mammography and bone densitometry services.

Saint Vincent gastroenterologists began to use capsule endoscopy (a tiny camera in a pill capsule) to diagnose gastrointestinal disorders.

Saint Vincent introduces the region to Gamma Knife technology - brain surgery without an incision.

Saint Vincent joins a statewide initiative to battle cancer.

The Saint Vincent Guidelines Applied in Practice for Heart Attack Patients project receives the Vantage Quality Award for Clinical Excellence.

Saint Vincent achieves best quality performance for seven procedures and treatments in our market according to a Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council report.
Frontier Family Practice and Greater Erie Surgical Associates join the Saint Vincent Medical Group.

Erie Home Health Services, a new Saint Vincent affiliate in partnership with Millcreek Community Hospital and Corry Memorial Hospital, opens for business.

The Saint Vincent Osteopathic Emergency Medicine Residency is established.
Saint Vincent neurosurgeons begin to use minimally invasive equipment for spine surgeries to spare back muscles and decrease pain, recovery time and blood loss.
Saint Vincent cardiothoracic surgeons implant a special ventricular assist device, or portable artificial heart, into a patient.

Saint Vincent provides jobs to nearly 2,700 area residents and has a $250 million impact on the community.

Saint Vincent provides $12.5 million in uncompensated services and activities to patients and the community and $3.1 million in charity care to uninsured and underinsured patients.

More than 550 uninsured patients obtained medical coverage with the help of a Saint Vincent medical assistance advocate.

Saint Vincent Health Center's focus on quality shines through and exceeds the national average in 14 of 16 quality-of-care indicators according to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services statistics on the new Web site,

Saint Vincent's bond rating receives a double upgrade from Moody's Investment Service Inc. as a result of exceptional financial performance.

Saint Vincent, the City of Erie, Erie County, Highmark and the Sisters of Saint Joseph in proclaiming a local week to create awareness about the uninsured.

Saint Vincent and Landmark Healthcare Facilities LLC break ground for the $28.2 million Landmark construction project.

Geropsych unit opens

Imaging Center opens

Spine Center opens

Saint Vincent earns Best Places to Work in PA ranking.

Lean Six Sigma is adopted as the #1 quality improvement philosophy for Saint Vincent.
Highmark Quality Blue Project-completed 100 percent of the quality performance standards and received a significant financial reward

Surgery Center is named a National Patient Satisfaction Leader-only one of seven in the United States to receive the Press Ganey Summit Award.

Saint Vincent receives the HAP Achievement Award for Human Resource's Customer Service Enhancement Program

Digital biplane technology developed to stop strokes and aneurysms in their tracks
Oncology Nurse Navigator and Breast Health Navigator programs introduced by Saint Vincent to assist cancer patients through diagnosis, treatment and recovery.

Saint Vincent becomes the region's largest residency training provider.

Great Lakes Family Medicine joins the Saint Vincent Medical Group

Saint Vincent is ranked #18 on the 2007 AARP Best Employers for Workers over 50 list

Saint Vincent wins Best Places to Work in PA honors for the third time and moves up the list from #12 to #5.

Saint Vincent earned Joint Commission's Gold Seal of Approval by obtaining primary stroke certification.

Saint Vincent Stroke Alert Team celebrates their 1-year anniversary

Saint Vincent Call Center celebrates their 20-year anniversary and earned RelayHealth's 2007 ICARE award.

Saint Vincent Surgery Center, Erie's first and busiest same-day surgery center, also celebrated 20 years.

Westfield Memorial Hospital associates and physicians celebrated the hospital's 65th anniversary.

Northwest Pa. Workforce Investment Area Youth Services named Saint Vincent the Employer of the Year. Saint Vincent provided learning opportunities to 14 individuals through the program, and five have joined the staff.

Saint Vincent is the only company in Erie and one of six in Pennsylvania to receive the American Heart Association's first-ever Start! Fit-Friendly company award.

Saint Vincent's Maternal Child Health associates, physicians and midwives delivered a record number of babies-2,126. More babies come into the world at Saint Vincent than any other hospital in the region.

Saint Vincent Sports Medicine moved to a new location in Yorktown Center on West 12th Street. Sports Medicine, Rehab Solutions and the Saint Vincent Imaging Center are all located in the Yorktown Plaza.

The new medical office building opened on the Saint Vincent campus.

The HealthyU Associate Fitness Center opened on the lower level of the new medical office building.

Saint Vincent partnered with Erie Insurance Group and the Second Harvest Food Bank to provide fresh produce to those in need through the Community Harvest for Hunger. Associates from both organizations donated in excess of 1,300 pounds of fresh produce.

Saint Vincent was one of four hospitals in the nation to be awarded the American Hospital Association/McKesson Quest for Quality Award.

Saint Vincent was recognized as a Thomson/Reuters Top 100 Hospital for Cardiovascular Benchmarks for Success.

Saint Vincent was recognized as a Top 100 Hospital Performance Improvement Leader by Thomson/Reuters.

Saint Vincent received a designation from the American College of Radiology as a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence.

Saint Vincent Stroke Center earned the AHA/ASA Get with the Guidelines-Stroke Silver Performance Award.

The medical office building was officially dedicated in December of 2008. The Sister Margaret Ann Hardner building was dedicated in honor of sister's leadership and vision.
Saint Vincent opens the new Endoscopy Center in the Yorktown Commons building in November.

Saint Vincent opens PharmSV, a pharmacy dedicated to the needs of all SVHS associates and their families, as well as outpatient prescriptions.

The Saint Vincent Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) went under intense renovation and celebrated its grand opening in September. The new 10,000 square foot, state-of-the-art facility features 19 individual, private pods for families to bond with their babies.
A new record number of babies-2,308- were delivered by the SVHS physicians and midwives in 2008. Twice as many babies were born at Saint Vincent than any other NWPA hospital.

Saint Vincent introduced the Pink Porches program in October to honor Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Nearly 1,600 pink light bulbs were sold during the campaign.

Saint Vincent was named Employer of the Year by the Economic Development Corporation of Erie County (EDCEC) in January.  Each year, this award is presented to an organization as recognition for their investment in the Erie community. 

Saint Vincent was re-designated as a Blue Distinction Center for Cardiac Care by Highmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield.   

Saint Vincent was one of 23 hospitals nationally to receive the 2009 Premier Award For Quality.  Saint Vincent also received the award in 2008, making us one of only five hospitals in the country to win the award both years.  Premier has also partnered with Medicare (CMS) for a Healthcare Quality Incentive Demonstration Program.  This measures quality compliance with five evidence based practices, and provides bonus awards to top hospitals.  During the fourth year of this program, Saint Vincent was in the top 10% of hospitals for compliance with Heart Attack and Total Joint best practice measures.   

Saint Vincent received the AHA/ASA Get With The Guidelines® Stroke Gold Plus Performance Achievement Award in 2009.  

Saint Vincent received the American Heart Association’s Start! Fit-Friendly company award for the second year in a row.   

Saint Vincent was recognized for a third year on the 2009 AARP Best Employers for Workers Over 50 list.  

The Saint Vincent Endoscopy Center was accredited by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC). 

The Saint Vincent sponsored, Erie Regional Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT) was deployed to serve during the inauguration of the 44th President, Barack Obama. 
Saint Vincent chaplain, Father Dennis Martin was honored by the Serra Club of Erie as the 2009 Priest of the Year.   

Saint Vincent opened the $7 million Mother/Baby Center in August.  The Center offers women and families private rooms and all the amenities of a luxury hotel. 

Saint Vincent joined Spirit of Women (2009-2012), a network of more than 120 premier hospitals and health systems throughout the United States, dedicated to advancing the health of women and their families. 

A new record number of babies- over 2,400- were delivered at SVHS, physicians and midwives in the past year.  Twice as many babies were born at Saint Vincent, than any other NWPA hospital.

A record number of babies were born at Saint Vincent in July-266 were delivered. 
The Saint Vincent Emergency Department staff saw 67,597 patients in 2009. 

HealthGrades, the leading independent healthcare ratings organization, published a study finding that Saint Vincent Health Center is #1 in Pennsylvania for cardiac and vascular surgery for 2011.  Saint Vincent Health Center is also among the top 10% in the nation for cardiac services, cardiac surgery, pulmonary services, vascular surgery, prostatectomy, and critical care. The nation’s nearly 5,000 hospitals were all included in this sweeping study, which examined mortality rates and complication rates from government data from 2007, 2008 and 2009.    For 2011, Saint Vincent Health Center also received the HealthGrades Cardiac Care Excellence Award™, the Cardiac Surgery Excellence Award™, the Pulmonary Care Excellence Award™, the Vascular Surgery Excellence Award™, the Prostatectomy Excellence Award™, and the Critical Care Excellence Award™. 

Saint Vincent received the Premier Award for Quality for the third consecutive year.  Saint Vincent was one of only two hospitals in the nation to receive this award for three years in a row.  The award recognizes leading health care organizations that efficiently provide outstanding patient care and consistently set the standard in clinical excellence.   

Saint Vincent was designated as a Blue Distinction Center for Knee and Hip Replacement by Highmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield.   

In June of 2010, Saint Vincent received the 2010 Oncology Nursing Certification Corporation Employer Recognition Award presented at the Oncology Nursing Societies Annual Congress in San Diego, CA.   

Saint Vincent received the AHA/ASA Get With The Guidelines® Stroke Gold Plus Performance Achievement Award in 2010.  

Saint Vincent earned the readmissions award from Highmark Quality Blue.  Out of all the participating hospitals, Saint Vincent had the best overall performance reduction of 7-day and 30-day readmissions to inpatient and observation status.

Saint Vincent hosted Good Morning America, as they honored Environmental Services associate, Almaz Gebermedhin, with the Good Morning America and Emeril Lagasse “Mother’s Day Breakfast in Bed Contest.”   Almaz was honored by Saint Vincent Call Center nurse, Janice Hulings.  Emeril prepared a gourmet breakfast for Almaz as she was joined by all five of her children and many of her fellow co-workers on Saint Vincent’s front lawn.  This was a fitting tribute to a hardworking mother. 

The Saint Vincent website,, underwent a complete transformation and was re-launched in March.  The updated website features user-friendly design, organization and look. 

Erie Home Health (an affiliate of Saint Vincent, Millcreek Community Hospital, Corry Memorial Hospital Home Health & Corry Regional Hospice and Vantage Healthcare Network) joined with Corry Memorial Home Health & Corry Regional Hospice and Millcreek Community Hospital to form Regional Home Health and Hospice.  Home health and hospice services in northwestern Pennsylvania were expanded and enhanced through this new, hospital-based partnership. 

Saint Vincent broke ground to the next phase of the 10-year, multimillion dollar expansion initiative in May.  The Infill Building will connect the Hardner Building with the Health Center to accommodate increasing patient volumes by improving access to the Health Center, streamlining the delivery of care.  The project will include a new Emergency Department, expanded and larger Operating Room Suites and a highly efficient energy plant in a three story, 105,000 square foot building.   

Saint Vincent Urgent Care-West opened in January, offering patients a second, convenient alternative to visiting the Emergency Room for minor illnesses and injuries.  Urgent Care offers patients evening and weekend hours without an appointment.    

The new  Nursery opened in January.  The nursery was one of the final projects to be completed in the Mother/Baby renovation project.  The Saint Vincent Mother/Baby Unit is the region’s most sophisticated neonatal intensive care unit, new private gynecological suites and 27 new, private patient rooms. 

Consultants in Cardiovascular Diseases Inc. joined the Saint Vincent family and will now be known as Saint Vincent Consultants in Cardiovascular Diseases, LLC

Saint Vincent welcomed several new senior leaders to the family in 2010:  Christopher Clark, DO, Chief Quality Officer Sister Carol Morehouse, Senior Vice President of Mission Integration Ed Malindzak, Senior Vice President of Human Resources

Scott Whalen, PhD, was welcomed as President & COO in August and will be Saint Vincent’s new CEO beginning January 1, 2011. 


Saint Vincent welcomed several new senior leaders to the family in 2011.  Scott Whalen, PhD, FACHE, President and CEO; Tom Fucci, MPA, FACHE, Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer; Al Mansfield, CPA, FACHE, CFO; and Maureen "Mo" Melia Chadwick, RN, MSN, NE-BC, CNO.  

In August, Saint Vincent and Cleveland Clinic announced their intent to develop a unique clinical collaboration that will ensure residents of the northwestern Pennsylvania region continue to have a choice in accessing high quality health care.  

Saint Vincent earned the Highmark Quality award for the second year in a row for best performance in reducing readmissions.  Out of all the participating hospitals, Saint Vincent had the best overall performance in the reduction of 7-day and 30-day readmissions to inpatient observation status.  

Saint Vincent was designated as a Blue Distinction Center for Knee and Hip Replacement by Highmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield. 

Saint Vincent received the AHA/ASA Get With The Guidelines® Stroke Silver Plus Performance Achievement Award in 2011.   The Saint Vincent Stroke Center was honored once again by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association (AHA/ASA) with the 2010 Get With the Guidelines (GWTG) Stroke Silver Performance Achievement Award, which recognizes Saint Vincent’s commitment and success in implementing excellent care for our stroke patients.   

The Saint Vincent Heart Center was honored with the Get With The Guidelines Bronze Quality Achievement Award from the American Heart Association.  The recognition signified that Saint Vincent Health Center reached the aggressive goal of treating heart failure patients for at least 90 days with 85% compliance to core standard levels of care. 
Saint Vincent earned full Joint Commission accreditation once again in March.  Participation in this survey is voluntary and Saint Vincent has consistently earned this accreditation since the early 1950s. 

Ten Saint Vincent associates danced their way to fame this year as a part of the national campaign, “Make the Call-Don’t Miss a Beat,” which targeted women and their families to learn the most seven common symptoms of a heart attack.  The video was presented in partnership by the US Department of Health and Human Services office of Women’s Health and Spirit of Women.  Saint Vincent was featured on the Spirit of Women home page and a story of this campaign also appeared on the front page of USA Today.  

Saint Vincent opened a new online gift and wellness store directly from the Saint Vincent web site.  The new site allows you to purchase gifts, health care products related to diabetes, nutrition, home health, fitness, rehab, mom & baby and much more.  A portion of every purchase benefits the Saint Vincent Auxiliary.   

The IT department and Medical Group successfully launched My Saint Vincent (mySV) in May.  This online portal allows patients to easily access and manage their care, and communicate with their doctor’s office quickly and conveniently.  

Saint Vincent Health Center appeared in the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s advertisement in the U.S. News & World Report, “America’s Best Hospitals” issue, which highlighted excellence in stroke care nationwide.  

Saint Vincent Maternal Child Health launched two activities to enhance the patient experience in the Mother and Baby Center and Pediatrics units:  quiet time hours, that give patients a two hour period to rest and relax without any interruptions and aren’t medically necessary.  The second activity, for newborns, is the “baby is born lullaby.”  A lullaby plays overhead to let everyone in the Health Center know a baby has been born.   
Saint Vincent surgeons performed 18,675 surgeries in fiscal year 2011, up 1.2% from 2010.   

The Saint Vincent Emergency Room continued to remain busy in fiscal year 2011 with 77,833 visits.   

The Saint Vincent Mother/Baby Unit had a busy year once again with 1,869 births in fiscal year 2011.  

The Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) celebrated its 25th anniversary this year.  With this new milestone came a new logo and new official name:  Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.  Read More.  Foundation associates raised a total of $275,000 for pediatric and neonatal services through the Saint Vincent Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) telethon in June. 

The Auxiliary was pleased to present the Festival of the Trees event tradition again this year.  The event showcased nearly 100 professionally decorated trees and 60 nativity scenes from around the world and was held for the first time at the Bayfront Convention Center.  The event also featured Santa’s Castle & the North Pole Experience, live reindeer, the North Pole Express train, live entertainment, vendor sales and chances to win great prizes.   Read more. This year, marked the fifth year-in-a-row that Saint Vincent earned the AARP Award for Best Employers for Workers over 50.  

Saint Vincent Health System announced on October 16 that our Board of Trustees unanimously voted to pursue a strategic affiliation with Highmark. The announcement was made by Scott Whalen, Ph.D., FACHE president and CEO, Saint Vincent Health System, and William Winkenwerder, Jr., M.D., M.B.A, Highmark’s president and CEO. The affiliation with Highmark will enable Saint Vincent to strengthen its position in providing a strong choice for health care in the Erie region and accelerate its growth strategy in the northwestern Pennsylvania and southwestern New York areas. For Highmark, the proposed affiliation is another important step toward building a new integrated delivery system in western Pennsylvania to transform health care delivery and sustain access for the Erie-area residents to high-quality, more affordable health care.

On October 22, Saint Vincent announced its clinical affiliation with the Cleveland Clinic Heart and Vascular Institute to deliver world-class cardiovascular services right here in the Erie region. Effective December, 1, 2012, this affiliation combines the unparalleled research and expertise of Cleveland Clinic’s heart program with Saint Vincent’s cardiovascular programs to provide the highest-quality, most comprehensive patient care in all of northwestern Pennsylvania.

Saint Vincent has won the "Excellence in Health Care Compliance" award from the Department of Health. Saint Vincent is one of seven of the state’s 244 health care facilities, and the only recipient in the northwestern Pennsylvania region to receive this award during National Healthcare Quality Week.

Highmark Blue Cross/Blue Shield Blue Distinction Center for Knee and Hip Replacement
Highmark Blue Cross/Blue Shield Blue Distinction Center for Cardiac Care
Highmark Blue Cross/Blue Shield Blue Distinction Center for Spine Surgery

Breast Imaging Center of Excellence designation is awarded to breast imaging centers that achieve excellence by seeking and earning accreditation in all of the ACR’s voluntary breast-imaging accreditation programs and modules, in addition to the mandatory Mammography Accreditation Program.

Saint Vincent earned the American Heart Association’s Start! Fit Friendly Company-Gold Achievement for the positive changes made in making health and wellness a top priority.

Saint Vincent was named a Best Regional Hospital by U.S. News and World Report in July. This recognition is directed to hospitals outside of major metropolitan areas who continue to offer a high level of medical care to communities that otherwise might have limited options. According to U.S. News & World Report, "nominated hospitals are fully capable of providing first-rate care, even to patients with serious conditions who end up needing complex procedures."

Saint Vincent earned the American Heart/American Stroke Association Get with the guidelines Heart Failure— Silver Plus award in February 2012. The recognition signifies that Saint Vincent Health Center has reached impressive benchmarks in the evidence-based treatment of heart failure patients.

Saint Vincent Health Center was recognized for quality performance from United Healthcare Community Plan and received two Gold Star Performance awards and $100,000 for these efforts. Specifically, Saint Vincent NICU demonstrated effective NICU medical management in the services and discharge plans for babies born to UnitedHealthcare Community Plan members during a specific measurement timeframe.

In June, the Saint Vincent Surgery Center celebrated its 25th anniversary! The Saint Vincent Surgery Center was Erie’s first freestanding ambulatory surgery center and, in fact, was the first such center in the state of Pennsylvania when it opened 25 years ago! Today, the Saint Vincent Surgery Center remains one of the nation’s busiest in terms of patient volumes and one of the most successful by continually exceeding national standards for patient satisfaction. The Surgery Center opened on June 29, 1987 and to this date has treated 181,242 patients. The first patient to walk through the doors 25 years ago was then nine-year-old Shawn Carner, Jr, of Erie who underwent surgery to remove scar tissue.

Saint Vincent Ask-A-Nurse recently celebrated its 25th anniversary of operation serving Erie county. The 24/7 health hotline allows callers to speak directly with a specially trained, registered nurse. The experienced team of nurses offers callers fast, reliable health information 365 days a year. Callers receive accurate, confidential information right the privacy of their own home. In addition to health information, Ask-A-Nurse also assists with class registration and physician referral. Team also facilitates regional transfers and completes discharge call backs on med/surg patients 24 hours post discharge.

In July, Saint Vincent announced a new program for patients who suffer from pelvic disorders. The Saint Vincent Center for Pelvic Health was designed to provide a network of specialized care as well as the guidance and support of a pelvic health navigator to offer treatment for women with pelvic health issues.

Stroke care in the Erie region has now advanced to a higher level through a unique telemedicine program and collaboration between Saint Vincent Health Center and Cleveland Clinic, one of the nation’s top neurological programs. For patients in northwestern Pennsylvania and the surrounding region, this means a consistent, timely assessment of stroke symptoms 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Saint Vincent emergency physicians now have access to the Cleveland Clinic Telestroke Network for the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients through new video-conferencing telemedicine equipment. This equipment is located in the Saint Vincent Emergency Department and provides a dedicated link to Cleveland Clinic’s team of neurological specialists.

In September, Saint Vincent unveiled three new, state-of-the-art operating room suites including the region’s first high-tech hybrid operating room (OR)—all of which are now large enough to accommodate sophisticated minimally invasive and robotic surgical equipment. This $8.2 million project not only includes the new hybrid OR and two operating room suites but also additional pre-op rooms for surgical patients, new locker/dressing facilities for nurses and physicians, and updates to the surgical family waiting room. The addition of the new ORs allows us to offer surgical patients the most up-to-date, minimally invasive procedures from our experienced team of surgeons. The ORs are spacious enough to allow our surgeons to collaborate and work together, if necessary. This is especially important for some of the more complex cases that we see.

Becker’s Hospital Review recently named 101 Hospitals with Great Orthopedic Programs for 2012. Hospitals included on this list have orthopedic surgery departments with outstanding reputations, making them worthy of recognition. Exceptional departments often include physicians who treat professional athletes, engage in cutting-edge research and perform a large number of orthopedic procedures every year. Many of these hospitals have been recognized for excellence in orthopedics by U.S. News & World Report, HealthGrades and Thomson Reuters, and several have earned Magnet accreditation by the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Saint Vincent surgeons performed 18,751 surgeries in fiscal year 2012.

The Saint Vincent Emergency Room continued to remain busy in 2012 with 75,644 visits.

The Saint Vincent Mother/Baby Unit had a busy year once again with 1,146 births in 2012.

In fiscal year 2012, Saint Vincent provided more than $23 million in community benefit and care.

Our organization continues to have a significant impact on our region’s economy as well. In fiscal year 2012 in terms of salaries paid to Saint Vincent Health System’s 2,864 associates, and dollars spent within our region to maintain our mission, Saint Vincent has a $596 million economic impact.

The Auxiliary was pleased to present the Festival of the Trees event tradition again this year. The event showcased more than 80 professionally decorated trees and 60 nativity scenes from around the world and was held for the second time at the Bayfront Convention Center. The event also featured Santa’s Castle & the North Pole Experience, live reindeer, Creation Station, live entertainment, vendor sales and chances to win great prizes. The winning tree was "Candy Land" sponsored by Interim HealthCare and decorated by Janel Potratz Levin from Potratz Floral Shop & Greenhouses. Following the festival, this tree was delivered and donated to the Gertrude Barber Center.


American Heart Association Get With the Guidelines Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement
Recognized by U.S. News and World report, 2013-2014 Best Hospitals for: Cardiology, Heart Surgery, Gastroenterology, GI Surgery, Geriatrics, Nephrology, Neurology, Neurosurgery, Pulmonology
Among 101 Hospitals with great Orthopaedic Programs by Becker’s Hospital Review
Highmark BCBS Blue Distinction Center for Hip & Knee replacement, Cardiac Care and Spine Surgery