Gnaden Huetten Memorial Hospital and Palmerton Hospital, not-for-profit health care organizations, were founded to meet the needs of their communities. Both embody the spirit of community hospitals which have public service at the heart of their mission. Blue Mountain Health System, in announcing the historic partnership, promised to preserve the rich histories that the individual hospitals created over the years.
Palmerton Hospital has not stopped growing since the day ground was broken on June 8, 1907. It took less than a year to complete the first structure – a modest, eleven-bed facility created by The New Jersey Zinc Company as a non-profit institution after a severe typhoid epidemic had ravaged the community. By 1911, it had expanded to 30 beds and by 1926, it reached its present capacity of 70 beds. For 31 years, from 1910 to 1951, the Palmerton Hospital operated a School of Nursing to meet the community’s increased patient care need.
A new era dawned in 1963 when New Jersey Zinc officially presented the hospital to the community. Faced with challenges to modernize, the hospital and the community joined hands in a capital campaign which led to the construction of a new patient care wing. Many renovations and modernization projects ensued during the next 40 years. Today, the hospital offers comprehensive acute care services and features a diagnostic sleep center and adult day care services.
Gnaden Huetten Memorial Hospital
Gnaden Huetten draws its heritage from the pre-colonial Moravian settlers who in 1746 established a mission, Gnaden Huetten, at the mouth of the Mahoning Creek in the vicinity of what today is Lehighton. Following World War II, there was a desire by the citizens of Lehighton to establish a memorial in tribute to those Carbon County residents who lost their lives serving their country. On February 12, 1946, the Lehighton residents voted to establish a hospital that would serve as this living memorial.
When the articles of incorporation were signed on February 7, 1947, Gnaden Huetten Memorial Hospital was born. Ground was broken and construction began in June 1949. Gnaden Huetten Memorial Hospital was dedicated on March 31, 1951 with the following proclamation: “This shall stand forever as a living memorial to the sacred memory of the men and women of Carbon County who gave their lives so that the world might be one step nearer the peace all men prayerfully hope for.”
Over many years, many renovations and construction projects, Gnaden Huetten evolved into an acute care hospital with 111 licensed beds, a 91-bed skilled nursing and rehabilitative facility, and a home health care agency.
Complete Healthcare Services
The hospitals of the Blue Mountain Health System provide a full array of services including comprehensive diagnostic and inpatient services, skilled nursing and rehabilitation care, home health care, adult behavioral health services and adult day care. It is Carbon County’s largest employer with approximately 1,100 employees and assets over $90 million. By combining resources, Blue Mountain Health System will fulfill its mission: “to promote, maintain and restore the good health of all the people in the communities we serve through partnerships for excellence in health care service delivery.”