Deaconess Associations Incorporated

advancing healthcare solutionssm


Our History

The Deaconess Legacy: Taking Care into the Community

In 1888, the Cincinnati community started a “sick house” staffed by Methodist deaconesses, who were known for visiting the sick and bringing needed care to people where they lived. It evolved into founding the city’s first general hospital, and included Cincinnati’s first nurses’ training school.

Today, Deaconess continues that legacy through its community-based and delivered health services, and its expanding philanthropic grant-making.

Significant Events

Protestant church women known as “deaconesses” open the first Deaconess Hospital on Liberty Street in Cincinnati, Ohio.  In 1902, a new facility was built on Straight Street.
The Deaconess School of Nursing graduates the first group of nurses registered with the Ohio State Medical Board.
20th Century
Throughout the 20th century, Deaconess Hospital expands into a full service acute care hospital to include emergency care, inpatient services, surgical services, pathological services, diagnostic services, outpatient ambulatory services, and primary care services.
The parent corporation, Deaconess Associations, Inc. (DAI) is formed to enable the organization to provide a diversified portfolio of healthcare services beyond the acute care setting. The Deaconess Health Associations Fund is incorporated to facilitate Deaconess’ participation in charitable endeavors. Deaconess Enterprises is created as our for-profit arm, which ultimately houses adult and pediatric services, as well as infusion therapy in Ohio, Mississippi, Louisiana, Tennessee, Texas, Indiana, Illinois and Pennsylvania.
Deaconess Long Term Care, Inc. is established to support our entry into the skilled nursing, assisted living and independent retirement community industry. Cottingham Retirement Community joins DAI as its first long-term healthcare facility. The division grows to include ownership and management of long-term care communities in Ohio, Missouri, Kansas and Florida.
Deaconess Associations Inc. initiates its transformation to a multi-faceted healthcare services company devoted to promoting wellness and independence,preventing and managing disease, and facilitating access to care. The Deaconess Foundation elevates its presence in the field of philanthropy by actively supporting a variety of healthcare related initiatives in the community. Since 2012, over $2.5 million has been granted to worthy causes which complement our renewed focus.
Deaconess’ sponsored Heimlich Heroes program trains more than 4,000 youth and adults across the country in the life-saving Heimlich Maneuver.