Mercy Hospital

Mercy Hospital

Mercy Hospital is the main hospital facility of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and is located at 1400 Locust Street in the Uptown section of the Pittsburgh, only a few blocks downtown. The Mercy Hospital is the first chartered hospital founded in the city of Pittsburgh and also the first hospital in the world to have been established by the Sisters of Mercy.

The original Mercy Hospital on Penn Avenue.
The original Mercy Hospital located on Penn Avenue at Concert Hall.

The Sisters of Mercy, a religious congregation founded in Ireland in 1831 by Catherine McAuley, brought it's mission to Pittsburgh in 1843. Mother Frances Warde led six other sisters to the United States, where they founded the first congregation of the Sisters of Mercy in Pittsburgh. The “Seven Sisters” of Mercy opened the hospital on Jan. 1, 1847. It was located in a temporary frame building on Penn Avenue known as Concert Hall. Mercy established the region’s first teaching hospital with resident physicians in training in 1848.

Mercy Hospital - 1895
Ambulances arrive at Pittsburgh's Mercy Hospital in 1895.

Mercy's opening led to the formation of several denominational hospitals throughout the region. In the mid-1800s, Pittsburgh suffered from several outbreaks of diseases like cholera, and hospitals like Mercy did wonders to improve the primitive public health provisions in the city.

The Sisters of Mercy and the dedicated physicians and nurses of Mercy Hospital continued to serve the Pittsburgh region through the Civil War, World War I, the worldwide Spanish influenza epidemic, the Great Depression, and World War II.

Mercy Hospital - 1917
Vintage color postcard showing Mercy Hospital of Pittsburgh in 1917.

In the 1960s, a decision was made to keep the Mercy Hospital at it's present location in uptown Pittsburgh. Over the next four decades, the hospital expanded, replaced facilities, and developed specialized programs incorporating advanced technology. On Jan. 1, 2008, Mercy Hospital of Pittsburgh merged with UPMC to become UPMC Mercy.

Mercy Hospital - 2010
Mercy Hospital, shown in 2010, is the main hospital facility of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

From it's inception in 1847, the Mercy Hospital of Pittsburgh has welcomed and served all who are in need of it's services regardless of race, nationality, age, gender or religion. Today, UPMC Mercy continues to provide significant amounts of unreimbursed healthcare to the poor and uninsured in Pittsburgh and the entire Western Pennsylvania region. The hospital remains Pittsburgh’s only Catholic hospital with specialized services.

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