Looking ahead to the next 100 years of nursing at Mercy Hospital
By Bette Neville, MSN, RNC
As we celebrate National Nurses Week this month, Mercy Hospital would like to thank all our nurses for their professionalism, compassion, and commitment to our patients. It shines through in everything you do, including our hospital’s CMS 5-star status and consistently excellent patient experience and safety achievements.
The story of Mercy Hospital began with the Sisters of Mercy providing care for victims of the Spanish flu in Portland toward the end of World War I. This act of kindness led to the opening of the hospital in 1918, putting the Sisters on a path to help shape local healthcare delivery in our region for decades to come.
Over the course of the last century, many important milestones were reached in our work to address the critical healthcare needs of greater Portland, including the establishment of Mercy’s School of Nursing in 1920. Building on our commitment to nursing more recently, Mercy launched the New Graduate RN Program, which exposes new nurses to a wide variety of settings—both inpatient and outpatient—to prepare them for their work caring for patients.
Hayley Thorne, who now works as a nurse at Mercy’s State Street Hospital, described the comprehensive program as “unlike any other in the state.”
Christina Ross is now an RN in surgical services, and she appreciated the ability to work in several different areas of nursing, giving her a better understanding of the career track she chose to pursue. And Cody Barba, who is also a Mercy nurse, said he felt the program provided him with an excellent transition to the hospital setting.
While healthcare is more dynamic than ever before, the critical role of nursing will always be a constant. Today, Mercy is proud to be Portland’s community hospital. Our centennial this year provides an opportunity to reflect on the progress made in our community—progress that would not be possible without the central role played by nurses.
Bette Neville, MSN, RNC, is Vice President of Nursing and Patient Care Services at Mercy Hospital.
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