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Corporate name change signals era of expansion for SSM Health

Participating in the unveiling of new signage at SSM Health St. Joseph Hospital – St. Charles are (from left) Dr. Doug Barton, vice president of medical affairs; Mike Bowers, president; Jessica Bauer, vice president of operations; and Anitra Galmore, vice president of nursing.

Participating in the unveiling of new signage at SSM Health St. Joseph Hospital – St. Charles are (from left) Dr. Doug Barton, vice president of medical affairs; Mike Bowers, president; Jessica Bauer, vice president of operations; and Anitra Galmore, vice president of nursing.

Seven SSM Health hospitals in the St. Louis area have new names, including hospitals in St. Charles and St. Louis counties, as the nonprofit health care provider continues its rebranding efforts.

The first change, which came in November 2014, was to drop the word “care” from the official SSM moniker. Next came the rebranding of the hospitals under a common name. Signs will go up at the hospitals over the next six months, but SSM Health officials unveiled the health organization’s new name and new logos at announcements throughout the area on Wednesday, July 29.

SSM St. Joseph Hospital in St. Charles, at 300 First Capitol Drive, now becomes SSM Health St. Joseph Hospital – St. Charles. The organization’s other hospitals in the county will be known as SSM Health St. Joseph Hospital – Lake Saint Louis and SSM Health St. Joseph Hospital – Wentzville.

In St. Louis County, SSM’s hospitals become SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital, St. Mary’s Hospital-Richmond Heights. SSM Health DePaul Hospital – St. Louis, SSM Health St. Clare Hospital – Fenton, and SSM Health St. Mary’s – St. Louis. SSM Health also operates a rehabilitation hospital and outpatient center.

“United under one name is a big deal,” said Mike Bowers, president of SSM Health St. Joseph Hospital – St. Charles, who also oversees the group’s Lake Saint Louis and Wentzville facilities. Bowers, speaking to a group of employees and community officials gathered for the unveiling of the new logo, said the rebranding was “much more than just a name or logo change.”

“It represents our promise to this community, what they can expect in every single interaction with us, whether it’s online, on the phone, or in person,” Bowers said.”

Health care is changing and Bowers said the branding change repositions the health care group to be seen as a company leading that change. But SSM Health, along with other health care providers, have been making changes and investments in St. Charles County for several years.

In April 2013, then SSM Health Care, announced plans to invest $180 million in expansion projects intended to “transform and improve the health care experience for patients across St. Charles, Warren and Lincoln counties,” according to a press release at the time.

Those plans included additional beds for the hospital in Lake Saint Louis, a new emergency and outpatient center in Wentzville, and a new state-of-the-art outpatient campus in eastern St. Charles County. Bowers said those plans are progressing.

SSM Health purchased the Columns Banquet Center at 711 Veterans Memorial Parkway near Interstate 70 last year. The facility was torn down two weeks ago.

“Sometime this fall, October or November, we’re going to have a groundbreaking for a 55,000-square-foot outpatient center,” Bowers said.

Bowers said work continues on adding more than 80 beds in western St. Charles County with the building of a three-story patient tower at the Lake Saint Louis hospital. That project may be finished by 2017.

SSM Health also has broken ground on a $10.4 million, 22,000-square-foot outpatient facility on Meyer Road at Wentzville Parkway and has been working to improve emergency room facilities at its nearby hospital campus. The outpatient facility is slated to open in 2016.

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