New signs are going up outside the facilities of the Mercy Health Network as the organization changes its name to “MercyOne.”
MercyOne President and CEO , Bob Ritz, says the name change is part of a larger ongoing process following the 1998 merger of Catholic Health Initiatives and Trinity Health. “The original purpose for our organization to come together on behalf of our two members was to really represent ourselves as one to the state of Iowa — for an organized, coordinated Catholic health system,” Ritz says.
The organization has 18 owned or joint venture medical centers and hospitals, along with 25 affiliated medical centers and 420 clinics. “Our plan is for our providers to work much more closer together,” according to Ritz. “So that when somebody one level of care to another within our service — our goal is to provide a very personalized and convenient experience for them.”
MercyOne has 18 hospitals or medical centers in western, central and northern Iowa. He says a large part of the change is creating one culture among all the facilities. “We do think that the change will be more significant than logos and signs. We think that’s just the visual kind of surface of the brand change,” Ritz says. “The real change is the promise that we’re all making across 20,000 people for a level of experience that we think people want.”
Ritz is traveling around to the facilities in Iowa as part of the start of the name change. “It’ll be a three-year transition to complete implementation. We’ll never be complete — even if we are brand was a hundred years old — you are always building something, always replacing something. I think the bulk of the work will occur between now and the next two years,” Ritz says.
The MercyOne change comes five years after another major health system made a name change. The Iowa Health System changed its name to Unity Point back in 2013.
MeryOne has medical centers and hospitals in Des Moines, West Des Moines, Clive, Centerville, Newton, Sioux City, Primghar, Dubuque, Clinton, Dyersville, Elkader, Waterloo, Oelwein, Cedar Falls, Mason City, New Hampton.