Founded in 2001 by representatives of seven local organizations, the Refugee Healthcare Partnership (RHP) provides necessary health services and meaningful employment opportunities for refugees in the Tampa Bay, FL, area. Spearheaded by Catholic health care organizations and Catholic Charities of the Diocese of St. Petersburg, the RHP was made possible initially by funding from the Bon Secours Mission Fund of Bon Secours Health System, Marriottsville, MD. Florida leads the nation in granting lawful permanent resident status to refugees and asylum seekers.
In 2000, Bon Secours Health System began a growth spurt that added eight hospitals, spreading its operations across nine states. But now it's a different story; since last November the system has announced plans or deals to sell facilities in Florida and Virginia, and leave New Jersey entirely. Incoming CEO Richard Statuto, left, faces a handful of challenges. "We need to determine how effective they've been at right-sizing their organization," a Standard & Poor's analyst says.
Since 1977, Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers of New York City has been creating and maintaining supportive housing offerings for at-risk populations, such as individuals with HIV/AIDS, those with substance abuse challenges, and the mentally ill. By providing a continuum of medical and social services, the organization aims to help residents stabilize and rebuild their lives. Saint Vincent sees empowerment as a key step toward helping individuals maintain their health, re-enter the community, seek employment, and pursue other goals.
St. Joseph Health System (SJHS), Orange, CA, has been committed since the mid-1990s to acting as an advocate for the housing needs of low-income people. In 1997, for example, SJHS became a founder, with Mercy Housing and six other Catholic health care organizations, in creating the Strategic Health Care Partnership, an investment pool designed to bring affordable housing to the most vulnerable. In 1999, SJHS supported Mercy Housing's construction of an 81-unit development for very limited-income senior citizens in Orange County, CA.
St. Joseph's/Candler, a two-hospital system in Savannah, GA, and Mercy Housing East (MHE), Atlanta, a regional subsidiary of the Denver organization, collaborate on housing projects in southeastern Georgia. In Savannah, the partners transformed two local landmarks, a former hospital and a former school, into an 88-apartment development for low-income, predominantly African-American residents. St. Joseph's/Candler also provides health services to the community. As a result of their work, MHE and St. Joseph's/Candler have helped restore a historic city neighborhood.
Faced with the question of what to do with an aging, under-used hospital in northeast Detroit, St. John Health, Warren, MI, turned to the community for help in developing a plan for transforming the campus in a way that would better meet local needs. Through meetings and interviews with local residents, St. John Health learned that community members needed job training, career development, employment, health care, housing, and a safe environment. To meet these needs, St. John Health developed a plan to convert the facility, ST.
The U.S. Catholic healthcare system is healthy financially, but providers are warily expecting cuts in federal reimbursement. Large systems have worked to become more efficient and profitable, and those efforts are paying off. "We are doing well. We've continued to improve our operating margins," says Kris Zimmer, left, an executive at SSM Health Care.
Bon Secours Health System's South Division launched a multitude of performance-improvement projects in 2004 even though it boasted a 9% margin. Why? Officials at the Catholic healthcare system wanted to increase the amount of money available for its nation-wide charitable commitments as well as to invest in capital projects critical to its mission.
"Spirituality in the workplace" has become something of a fad in corporate America as companies seek to find a balance between their employees' personal beliefs and the bottom line. Does this newfound spirituality-meets-margin differ from the spirituality traditionally observed in faith-based organizations? Often secular organizations, in an attempt to be as non-offensive and inclusive as possible, adopt an all-or-nothing approach to workplace spirituality.
The Sisters of Charity Health System, Lewiston, ME, a member of Covenant Health Systems, Lexington, MA, remains deeply committed to the mission of service begun by its foundress, St. Marguerite d'Youville. Although St. Marguerite experienced a hard life, her resilience and her commitment to the poor and disadvantaged serve as an inspiration to those who continue her legacy of compassionate care. The founding work of St. Marguerite and the sisters has helped to foster a culture in which the mission of service thrives among the system's 2,000 employees.