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Catholic Health Initiatives Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Faith-based Health System Was Formed in 1996 by Three National Catholic Systems

Catholic Health Initiatives, one of the nation’s largest nonprofit health systems, is celebrating its 20th anniversary this month with observances among employees at offices, hospitals and other health care facilities across the nation.

CHI, which operates 103 hospitals and hundreds of other facilities in 19 states, was formed in May 1996 when three large Catholic health systems came together to form what was then the largest faith-based health ministry in the nation. A fourth founding health system joined CHI the following year.

Kevin E. Lofton, who has served as CEO since 2013, led a celebration for employees in the national office in the Denver suburb of Englewood. The observance of the 20-year milestone included a series of brief videos by employees who described their personal thoughts about working at the non-profit health care system, which celebrates its anniversary each year on the first day of May.

Over the years, little has changed about CHI’s mission, which is rooted in a goal of creating and sustaining healthier communities. In his 20th anniversary video, Lofton spoke about how CHI has always focused on the “mind, body and spirit” of the individuals it serves. For his part, Chris Lowney, chair of the CHI Board of Stewardship Trustees, underscored what he and other board members feel are their absolute priorities: Quality, core values and a sense of mission.

When it was formed, CHI became the first national health system designated by the Vatican in Rome as a public juridic person, which was then a unique corporate-canonical structure that provided a pioneering partnership between lay and religious leaders. Since then, 16 other Catholic health systems have followed CHI’s lead in providing this flexibility at a time when the number of women religious was diminishing. The lay-religious partnership has ensured that CHI’s ministry will prosper and thrive well into the future.

To view any of the CHI 20th anniversary videos, click here; to read the Health Progress article on the history of CHI, click herean.

About Catholic Health Initiatives: Catholic Health Initiatives, a nonprofit, faith-based health system formed in 1996 through the consolidation of four Catholic health systems, expresses its mission each day by creating and nurturing healthy communities in the hundreds of sites across the nation where it provides care. The nation’s second-largest nonprofit health system, Englewood, Colorado-based CHI operates in 19 states and comprises 103 hospitals, including four academic health centers and major teaching hospitals as well as 30 critical-access facilities; community health-services organizations; accredited nursing colleges; home-health agencies; living communities; and other facilities and services that span the inpatient and outpatient continuum of care. In fiscal year 2015, CHI provided almost $970 million in charity care and community benefit – an 8% increase over the previous year -- for programs and services for the poor, free clinics, education and research. Charity care and community benefit totaled more than $1.6 billion with the inclusion of the unpaid costs of Medicare. The health system, which generated operating revenues of $15.2 billion in fiscal year 2015, has total assets of approximately $23 billion. Learn more at

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