PRESS RELEASE For Immediate Release Contact: Danny Strauss, (202) 835-8895
Providence Health System Dedicates Emergency Care Center for His Holiness Pope Francis
Washington, D.C. Mayor, Muriel Bowser and Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington, mark the occasion, coinciding with a major gift by prominent local philanthropists.
(Washington, D.C.) September 18, 2015 – Providence Health System, the longest continually serving system in Washington, D.C., -- and a part of Ascension, the nation’s largest Catholic and non-profit health system -- dedicated its Emergency Care Center (ECC) to Pope Francis today, becoming the first in the region to name its facility after His Holiness. Founded in 1861 by the Daughters of Charity, President Abraham Lincoln signed the charter to create Providence which has a deep history of helping those in need, particularly the sick, poor and those who are struggling.
With key local leaders from the political and faith communities in attendance, Providence held a formal ceremony outside the ECC to mark this honor. Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington, gave the blessing and dedication. “As we prepare to welcome Our Holy Father here in Washington next week, the Pope Francis Emergency Care Center stands as a symbol to all in our city that Providence Health System truly ‘walks with Francis’ through its dedication to mercy, service to all, and quality care for our brothers and sisters in need -- especially those on the margins of society. Just as Pope Francis sees the inherent dignity in every person -- Providence is here to serve those same individuals.”
Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser spoke, as well, addressing Providence’s longtime presence in the community and its mission of service to all in need. “Providence and our great city share a commitment to leave no one behind. Today, it is in that spirit, that Providence dedicates its Emergency Care Center for Pope Francis whose call for mercy and love for all people speaks to so many in the District and around the world,” stated Mayor Bowser.
The event also featured the official announcement of a major gift made by prominent philanthropists Judi Teske and her late husband Richard. The generous donation is the largest ever given to Providence by a living donor, and an entrance to the ECC is now named in their honor. Judi Teske shared “We wanted to create a legacy which would last far beyond us both. We have been blessed, and we felt it was important to support Providence, which positively impacts so many lives in our community.” Richard and Judi have made two significant gifts to Providence—one has been used toward the renovation and expansion of ECC. The other, a magnificent legacy gift, will be used to meet the greatest need of Providence at some time in the future.
Providence Health System President and CEO Amy E. Freeman welcomed the crowd, emphasizing how the Pope’s message and Providence’s mission are closely aligned. Freeman stated, “It is a tremendous honor to name the ECC after the Holy Father Pope Francis. And the Teske gift along with others will
bolster Providence’s service to all especially those who may be struggling. At Providence, we strive every day – as we have for the past 154 years -- to provide the most to those who may have the least. We are dedicated to making our patients, their families, and this community better.”
Providence Health System (www.provhosp.org) is a 408-bed hospital in Washington, D.C, with expert medical staff of more than 500 providers. Founded by the Daughters of Charity in 1861 with its charted signed by President Abraham Lincoln, Providence is the longest continually serving hospital in the District. Located near the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, Providence is situated on a 36-acre campus within the vibrant Brookland community in northeast DC. Our Catholic health ministry improves the health of individuals and of our community with compassion and justice and we are mission drive to serve all persons with joy, care, and respect. Providence is proud to be member of the Ascension, the nation’s largest Catholic nonprofit health system.
About Providence Health Foundation
Providence Health Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to raising funds is to support the charitable programs of Providence Health System by building partnerships with a diverse constituency of philanthropists, donors and volunteers. The Foundation shares Providence’s core mission to serve all persons with joy, care and respect, giving special attention to persons who may be struggling. Providence is member of Ascension Health and provides health care to the people of the national capital area.
Ascension (www.ascension.org) is a faith-based healthcare organization dedicated to transformation through innovation across the continuum of care. As the largest non-profit health system in the U.S. and the world’s largest Catholic health system, Ascension is committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all persons with special attention to those who are struggling the most. In FY2015, Ascension provided $2 billion in care of persons living in poverty and other community benefit programs. More than 150,000 associates and 35,000 affiliated providers serve in 1,900 sites of care – including 131 hospitals and more than 30 senior care facilities – in 24 states and the District of Columbia. In addition to healthcare delivery, Ascension subsidiaries provide a variety of services and solutions including physician practice management, venture capital investing, treasury management, biomedical engineering, clinical care management, information services, risk management, and contracting through Ascension’s own group purchasing organization.
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