Intermountain Healthcare Renaming Dixie Regional Medical Center

Jul 16, 2020, 4:30 PM | Updated: 11:32 pm

ST. GEORGE, Utah – Officials with Intermountain Healthcare announced they will be renaming the Dixie Regional Medical Center, effective Jan. 1, 2021.

The facility will be called the Intermountain St. George Regional Hospital.

“The original name was chosen 68 years ago to promote a feeling of community,” said Mitch Cloward, current hospital administrator. “Intermountain is committed to creating places of healing, which includes ensuring an environment where everyone feels safe and welcome. This new name positions us to do that well into the future.”

Intermountain Announces Name Change For St. George Hospital

LIVE: Intermountain Healthcare officials announcing a name change for Dixie Regional Medical Center in St. George.

Posted by KSL 5 TV on Thursday, July 16, 2020

St. George’s first hospital, Washington County Hospital, opened in 1913, before being renamed McGregor Hospital a few years later. A new hospital was built on the west side of the 400 East block in 1952 and named the Dixie Pioneer Memorial Hospital, before the larger Dixie Medical Center was built in 1975.

Officials said the word regional was added to the hospital’s name in 1990 to “define the hospital’s service area expansion beyond Washington County as the region continued to grow.”

“We are a vibrant, rapidly growing community,” said Dr. Patrick Carroll, the hospital’s medical director. “More than five million tourists pass through our area annually. Our heart, newborn intensive care, neurosciences, trauma and other programs are earning national recognition. Our Intermountain Precision Genomics program serves patients across the country and the world. This new name will provide greater strength and clarity as we serve those who are not from this area and recruit physicians, research scientists and caregivers from across the nation.”

Name research began at Intermountain eight years ago, and 11 of their hospitals now follow a pattern of using the city’s name, followed by hospital.

“That is the way individuals search online for medical care,” said Kevan Mabbutt, senior vice president at Intermountain. “Our St. George hospital serves a multi-state area, including several international tourist destinations, so it is important for the hospital to be easily identified.”

The name change comes after renewed calls to have Dixie State University and the area change its name.

However, residents have said the name Dixie does not have any ties to the South or slavery, and honors the settlers of the area, which is in the southern portion of the state.

“The name Dixie to us has always been one of love. One of inclusion,” said former St. George mayor Daniel McArthur. “I’m not one to try to be contentious about any of this. And people are entitled to their views. But it kind of disturbs me when people move in or others that come in and all the sudden jump in without knowing the history.”

A recently-formed petition to keep the name has 10 times the number of supporters compared to a petition asking Gov. Gary Herbert to discontinue the name’s usage.

Intermountain officials said the hospital’s new name will build on St. George’s growing reputation as a popular retirement and vacation community.

“Throughout the hospital’s history, our caregivers have provided the best possible care to everyone regardless of their background and heritage,” said Cloward. “This will not change. We love and appreciate our community, and as St. George Regional Hospital we will continue to advance our mission to help people live the healthiest lives possible.”

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Intermountain Healthcare Renaming Dixie Regional Medical Center