This year marks the 90th anniversary for St. Joseph Mercy Livingston, which first began its work in the City of Howell in the late 1920s’.

It was a generous donation from the McPherson family that allowed the city to convert a three-story home into a community hospital. Prior to St. Joe’s arrival, people were treated in their homes while travelers were typically treated at the Livingston County Jail, as it was the only suitable place to do so. St. Joe’s was over capacity by the 1950s’, which prompted The Hospital Authority, a nonprofit organization formed to raise funds and construct a new facility, to purchase 10 acres of land on Byron Road for $10,000 from the McPherson family. The McPherson Community Health Center opened in 1958, and became the first hospital in the state to staff both medical and osteopathic physicians.

The health system has continued its growth ever since. John O’Malley, President of St. Joseph Mercy Livingston and Brighton, says St. Joe’s has undergone multiple extensive renovations and expansions over the last 15 years to meet the evolving needs of the community and growing population. O’Malley says the health system has also worked very hard to improve the quality of their services and customer service.

O’Malley says while they’ve come a long way, there is clearly more to do, one main goal being to bring back a full service community hospital. O’Malley says “keeping local care local” has been their mission and a big part of their expansion of services. As for future goals, O’Malley says they’re working on their endocrinology and nephrology services, as well as working to bring rheumatology back. He notes the health system hopes to soon be doing robotic urology surgery, adding that there’s “a lot of excitement” for the future as they celebrate ninety years of community care.

O’Malley adds that 90 years may have passed, but the health system’s dedication to Livingston County still thrives, thanks to their leaders, caregivers, volunteers and the community. (DK)

Photo (courtesy of St. Joseph Mercy Health System): Health care at St. Joseph Mercy Livingston has evolved tremendously from lab work conducted in 1954 (left) to modern-day surgical techniques (right).