Celebrating Our Past & Our Progress

For more than a century, Mercy has provided high-quality health care with grace, compassion and attention to the needs of the community. This legacy continues as we look ahead, with faith in the future of Mercy and the remarkable patients, families and communities we are privileged to serve.

There are countless reasons to celebrate Mercy’s rich tradition. While there are many more, over the course of the next year, we will continue to complete this growing list of our favorite reasons (in no particular order).


Mercy’s 125 years of…


Breakthrough Treatments

Mercy has a reputation for offering the most breakthrough treatments, and for good reason. For example, in June 2018, Mercy announced a new treatment for stroke patients – mechanical thrombectomy. This interventional procedure is capable of opening the intracranial vessels after a large debilitating stroke which, without treatment, could lead to severe disability or death. Studies have shown mechanical thrombectomy also significantly reduces stroke-related disability and mortality.

Outstanding Volunteers

Since our founding, Mercy has been blessed with outstanding volunteers. Throughout the year, more than 300 volunteers and therapy service animals give more than 30,000 hours of service on campus and through donations. From all backgrounds and generations, these volunteers enrich the lives of people who are at their most vulnerable and provide comfort and compassion during times of need. Learn more about becoming a Mercy volunteer.

Community-Based Convenience

The best way to get well (and stay well) is to have access to health care when, where and how you need it. Since the first Mercy Medical Clinic opened in 1983, Mercy Clinics has grown to be central Iowa’s largest multi-specialty clinic system, operating more than 50 family practice, specialty, urgent care and pediatric clinics. Mercy Clinics continues to grow, with new clinics opened in 2017 in Grimes, Norwalk and Ottumwa.

Recognized Excellence

Mercy has the privilege of regularly being recognized for our contributions, including the 2016 accreditation in cardiac electrophysiology (EP) by the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC). Mercy Medical Center – Des Moines’ central campus and Mercy – West Lakes are the first centers in the nation to earn this prestigious recognition.

Mercy Volunteers

Mercy offers a wide-variety of volunteer positions, including arranging and delivering flowers for our patients.

Helping All God's Creatures

Isolettes used in Mercy Children’s Hospital & Clinics’ Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) aren’t just for human newborns. Two older isolettes were donated to the Blank Park Zoo to use for newborn animals who are unable to live in their habitat or be cared for by their mothers.

International Impact

Expanding Mercy’s mission “to never turn away any person who needed heart surgery,” in June 1978, the Sisters of Mercy began offering a program to mend the diseased hearts of the children on the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico.

In April 2018, Mercy celebrated the 40th anniversary of the program providing greatly needed heart health care to children on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.

Successful Outcomes

Every day, countless patients and families experience positive life changing outcomes at Mercy. In July 2017, Mercy and Iowa Heart Center’s Structural Heart program performed the 500th transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR).

Read the story of Gail Endres, the 66-year-old retired father of three who found himself in need of the comprehensive cardiac services only Mercy Medical Center – Des Moines can deliver.

Faith Forward

Mercy serves with fidelity to the Gospel as a compassionate, healing ministry of Jesus Christ to transform the health of our communities. To help serve this mission, Mercy Pastoral Care is available 24 hours a day for patients and families all faiths.

World-Class Cancer Research

Mercy’s involvement in cancer care began in 1917 when Mercy physician N.C. Schiltz experimentally treated his own cancer in hopes of finding a cure. By 1922, Mercy physicians were treating cancerous tumors with radium. Today, Mercy Cancer Center is proud to offer clinical research trials for numerous types of cancer, focusing on prevention, diagnosis, treatment and symptom control.

Donald Clifton

Donald (pictured) is an esophageal cancer survivor. His advice to other cancer patients? “Don’t hesitate to ask questions, have faith in your doctor, and know you’re in good hands at Mercy Cancer Center.”

Get inspired by reading stories shared by cancer survivors who received care at Mercy Cancer Center.



(515) 247-3121
1111 6th Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50314

Copyright ©2019 Mercy Medical Center. All Rights Reserved