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Santa Cruz, CaliforniaDignity Health Dominican Hospital celebrated a milestone on September 14, 2016: 75 years of service to the Santa Cruz County, California, community.

On the occasion of the anniversary, Nanette Mickiewicz, MD, Dignity Health Dominican Hospital President and CEO and Sister Janet Capone, OP, Dignity Health Dominican Hospital Community Board Chair issued the following reflection.

The past 75 years have been a memorable journey of commitment and community partnerships. It has been a privilege for us to provide our region with a level of cutting-edge health care normally found only in larger metropolitan areas. We have been devoted to our mission to serve all who come through the doors, regardless of their ability to pay.

And we have done all of this because we’re more than just a hospital. We’re a part of this community. When the Adrian Dominican Sisters arrived here in 1941, Santa Cruz was still largely a fishing community that also enjoyed a summertime tourist trade. The hospital grew along with the community to stay a step ahead of its health care needs. 

Today, Dominican is sophisticated, creative, and diverse, like our community. Dominican has the infrastructure and personnel to provide advanced health care that shares your zip code. And, many of Dominican’s past patients have become our partners, pledging donations that have helped turn a great hospital into an even greater hospital. 

When it comes to numbers, 75 is significant. Here are a few more:

  • Seven Sisters on staff.
  • 223 beds.
  • 96,360 patients served in the last year, half of whom came through our Emergency Department.
  • 375 newborns cared for in our Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in the last year. 
  • $14 million in direct charity care annually.
  • $40 million in broad community benefits annually. 

Dominican’s history is defined by the Adrian Dominican Sisters. Five of these women religious — only one a nurse — traveled to Santa Cruz from Michigan in 1941 to reopen a failed hospital on West Cliff Drive. Today, Adrian Dominicans still serve in leadership, clinical, and support roles, and other Sisters are valued members of the hospital’s board of directors.

On the threshold of this significant 75th anniversary, we join the hospital’s medical staff physicians, clinicians, support staff, Sisters, and volunteers in expressing enormous gratitude for the decades of heartfelt, unbroken support from our community. 

Thank you for the opportunity to continue to serve you … now, and for the next 75 years.


Feature photo: Sister Janet Capone, OP, presents the opening reflection at the session after the 75th Anniversary Liturgy.


Celebrating Dominican Hospital’s 75th anniversary are, from left: Sisters Beth Butler, OP; Judy Silva, OP; Michaella Siplak, OP; and Verionica Kelley, OP; Bishop Richard Garcia, of the Diocese of Monterey, California; and Sisters Adrienne Piennette, OP; Rita Eileen Dean, OP; and Mary Ellen Leciejewski, OP. 


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