On Friday, a four-hour barbeque celebration helped celebrate the fifth birthday of HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Highland.
Various staff members, including the hospital’s President and CEO John Ludwig and Bill Sullivan, the chairman of the board of directors, helped to serve hospital employees to thank them for their hard work.
“The success of this hospital is due to the amazing team work of our amazing colleagues and leaders,” Ludwig said.
HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital Highland is part of the Southern Illinois Division of Hospital Sisters Health System, which also includes HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in O’Fallon, HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital in Effingham, HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Breese, and HSHS Holy Family Hospital in Greenville.
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The brand new $63 million hospital campus was built in on Aug. 22, 2013, at its location at 12866 Troxler Ave. However, while the hospital has been standing for half of a decade, January marked St. Joseph Hospital’s 140th year in Highland. The hospital’s former building used to stand at 1515 Main St., which is now the large grass lot next to St. Paul’s Catholic School.
Ludwig said in its five years, the new hospital has been very successful.
“We have seen growth in volumes, physicians and services. Most importantly, we have increased the ability to keep quality of healthcare close to home for our community,” Ludwig said.
In 2016, the hospital was named as one of the top 20 critical access hospitals in the country, which is a designation given to rural hospitals. The hospital has also been honored by Illinois Hospital Association and Press Ganey Associates multiple years for quality care and patient satisfaction scores.
“Out of the 15 hospitals in our system, we have some of the best scores in many of our service areas,” Ludwig said.
The hospital’s Emergency Department leads the Hospital Sisters Health System (HSHS), as it finished last fiscal year in the 87th percentile in the country for patient satisfaction. Whereas its outpatient, inpatient and rehabilitation departments ranked in the 95th, 94th and 98th percentile rankings.
Technology added to the hospital in the last five years include:
- Hyperbaric oxygen chambers for wound care;
- Mobile PET/CT scans for imaging and cancer care;
- 3D mammography;
- Telemedicine partnerships for emergency, neurology, stroke and pediatric treatments and cardiac care;
- A MAKO robot for the expansion of orthopedic care.
The hospital is also the base for HSHS Rescue Flight, which services Highland, Bresse, Greenville and O’Fallon.
Other expansion include growth in the hospital’s cardiac care with increased days for cardiac rehab, and full-time cardiac coverage through an on-site team and telehealth.
The hospital has also expanded its care in multiple medical disciplines, including the recent hiring of a new general surgeon, urologist, and podiatrist. Future care advancements include the expansion of the hospital’s pain management program, the possible addition of dental surgery and a potential partnership with DaVita, a national dialysis company.
“Bringing the physicians on site in the medical office building has allowed us to build stronger relationships with our providers and work together to bring much needed services to the Highland area,” Ludwig said.
Hospital staff has also focused on the growth of its rehabilitation programs, including LSVT Big and Loud, for those diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, and a mobile Cancer Care program, which offers on-site chemotherapy once a week.
As for inpatient advancements, the hospital has added multiple amenities to help guests feel at home. The Sleep Menu allows patients to peruse a cart of sleep aids to help mimic their bedroom at home. They can choose from an assortment of aroma therapies, sounds machines and spiritual care options.
The At Your Service food program also allows patients to choose their own meals off of a menu.
The hospital has also worked on several initiatives for community outreach, including a partnership with the Greg Holthaus Memorial Fund to offer monthly CPR and AED training courses, which are free to the public.
Other community initiatives include:
- A summer breast support group;
- A free nutrition series for school-aged children;
- A new mother support group called MOM;
- Spring and fall health fairs;
- An annual community electronic recycling event;
- The building of the first aid and cooling station at the Madison County Fairgrounds.
However, aside from the advances in technology and expanded healthcare, Ludwig and Sullivan said what has helped to make the hospital standout in the last five years is its faculty.
“People here live the mission of this hospital,” Sullivan said.
Ludwig said that the hospital has a Catholic identity.
“And they provide with compassion unlike, I think, any other,” Ludwig said.
Ludwig and Sullivan said that the hospital is looking forward to serving Highland, and its surrounding areas for many years to come.
“We are very fortunate to have this hospital and we love working with out colleagues and patients,” Ludwig said.