Mercy Medical Center is proud to serve the Oshkosh community by providing quality patient care for more than a century.
In 1891, Father Roman Scholter, pastor of St. Mary's Church in Oshkosh, convinced the Sisters of the Sorrowful Mother to come to Oshkosh and start St. Mary's Hospital.
The first hospital was a temporary facility located on the corner of Merritt and Boyd Streets. A new hospital, a four-story structure on the same site, opened in March 1895. The hospital could accommodate 26 patients and had private rooms, operating rooms, a dining room and a chapel. In 1903, the hospital built an addition and new chapel.
In 1918, the Sisters of the Sorrowful Mother bought Lakeside Hospital, a competing hospital built on Hazel Street in 1912. The sisters renamed it Mercy Hospital.
Growth and Expansion
In response to the growing Oshkosh population, Mercy Hospital more than doubled its size in 1922 with the addition of a north-wing expansion. In 1938, construction began on a four-story maternity ward on the south side of the building.
In 1955, Mercy launched a $4 million, three-wing expansion and remodeling project. The new wings included modern operating rooms, additional patient rooms, an administration facility and a rehabilitation center. Patient rooms increased to 260.
Patients transferred from St. Mary’s Hospital to the expanded Mercy Hospital. The original hospital gradually became known as St. Mary’s Home for the Aged. After a $1 million remodeling project in 1956, its name changed to Marion Home in 1961.
Mercy underwent a major expansion and renovation project in 1965, at a cost of $6.5 million. In 1968, Mercy Hospital and Marion Home merged, becoming Mercy Medical Center. The consolidation increased bed size to 500.
Growth continued in the following decades. In 1978, Mercy broke ground for a $14 million expansion project to provide more space for the emergency room, outpatient area, laboratory facilities, medical records, radiology, intensive care, business and admitting offices, plus a new boiler and power plant.
Construction began on Mercy-Oakwood Medical Center in 1991. The facility houses a number of specialty medical services, including the Affinity Heart & Lung Center and the UW Cancer Center.
Mercy Medical Center and Affinity
In 1995, Mercy Medical Center and St. Elizabeth Hospital in Appleton joined forces to form Affinity Health System.
In 2000, Mercy Medical Center opened a new, $50 million hospital on the west side of Oshkosh. The same year, the hospital installed new MRI equipment, making Affinity Health System the only provider of spectroscopy in the area.
Innovations and Recognition Continue
The hospital opened a fifth-floor expansion to house the Rehabilitation department and Subacute Services in 2003. The change allowed for private patient rooms throughout the hospital. That year, Mercy Medical Center received “best practice” recognition in outreach and injury prevention from the National Foundation for Trauma Care.
Mercy Medical Center received recognition for its contributions to local health care again in 2004, when HealthGrades named it “Best in Wisconsin” and top 5 percent in the nation for joint replacement. In 2005, Solucient named the hospital a “Top 100 Hospital” for patient quality and financial performance and recognized it as a “Top 100 Most-Improved Hospital.” In 2006, HealthGrades ranked Mercy the number one orthopaedic hospital in Wisconsin, and the number one hospital in Wisconsin for joint replacement and spine surgery.
The spirit of the work started by the Sisters of the Sorrowful Mother in 1891 continues today at Mercy Medical Center. The innovation, growth and Christ-centered care Mercy Medical Center provides to patients helps make it the hospital of choice in Oshkosh.