History of St. Mary’s Health

St. Mary’s Health was established in 1930 as a Catholic facility by the Benedictine Sisters of the Monastery of St. Gertrude. In fact, its current administration offices were once occupied by the sisters of the Monastery, and it continues to honor its Catholic heritage to this day. In 1998, St. Mary’s Health partnered with Clearwater Valley Health. The two organizations began using a collaborative management approach and sharing one management team for both organizations. Both organizations also share the same board members, who come from all of the surrounding communities. Over the years, “satellite” clinics have been opened in Grangeville, Kamiah, Craigmont, Nezperce, and Elk City and staffed by St. Mary’s Health providers. More recently, telehealth has become another way the team is extending specialty service such as cardiology, emergency consultation, dermatology and even psychiatric care to patients in Clearwater, Idaho and Lewis counties.

History of Clearwater Valley Health

Planning for Clearwater Valley Health began in September 1954. Members of the then newly formed Orofino Kiwanis Club and other community leaders were the initial planners for the new hospital. Several fundraising efforts were held to help build the hospital, including asking prominent business leaders to each contribute one day’s pay to the effort. Employers at area businesses also chipped in to match – and often exceed – the funds donated by their employees.

In 1994, Clearwater Valley Health opened a new clinic in Kooskia, and one year later the clinic in Orofino moved to a new location near the hospital. In 1998, Clearwater Valley Health partnered with St. Mary’s Health to form a joint management team, which included shared board members from all the surrounding communities. Together, Clearwater Valley Health and St. Mary’s Health provide more than 45,000 outpatient visits annually.


Today, Clearwater Valley Health and St. Mary’s Health are award-winning, rural hospitals serving the health care needs of people across Clearwater, Idaho and Lewis counties. Through their deep commitment to high-value, sustainable health care and continuous innovation, it is their shared vision to be the leaders in rural health care.