Health Care in Joplin


For more than a century, Mercy Hospital Joplin has cared for the health care needs of the four-state area. In 1896, the Sisters of Mercy arrived with hopes of opening schools but discovered a need for health care because many miners working in the Joplin area needed access to a hospital. The Sisters were ambitious and started several small schools, in addition to opening Mercy Hospital.

The hospital grew over the years. In 1968, the Sisters opened St. John’s Regional Medical Center, which was licensed for 367 beds. Unfortunately, it was destroyed by the May 22, 2011, tornado.

Today’s Mercy Hospital Joplin is a new, technologically advanced, 240-bed hospital with adjoining clinic/physician office space on a 100-acre campus along Interstate 44. The 900,000-square-foot, $435 million hospital is eight stories high with room for expansion and unprecedented storm-hardened features.

Mercy Hospital Joplin has received numerous accolades over the years. Most recently, the hospital was awarded an A grade from The Leapfrog Group, a national nonprofit organization, for the fourth year in a row. This designation recognizes Mercy’s efforts in protecting patients from harm and meeting the highest safety standards in the United States.

Mercy not only excels in patient safety, service and quality, but also is a leader in bringing the most-advanced technology to Joplin.

From 3D mammography and Automated Breast Ultrasound, to low-dose CT lung cancer screening and a linear accelerator, Mercy’s advanced technology and caring staff provide patients with the best care. Mercy’s cancer program and the Mercy Breast Center are both accredited by the American College of Surgeons.

With robotic surgery at Mercy Hospital Joplin, patients experience less pain, have fewer complications and a faster recovery time. These are also outpatient procedures that do not require a hospital stay. Unlike open surgeries that require large incisions, robotic-assisted procedures use a number of small incisions usually 0.5 to 1.5 centimeters long. The robotic “wrists” can rotate 360 degrees and move in tiny increments, providing greater surgical precision and improved access to hard-to-reach areas.

Sometimes it’s an everyday challenge to manage a healthy lifestyle. A Mercy program called vEngagement is doing wonders for patients with multiple and complicated medical conditions such as those with congestive heart failure. The program helps keep them well from the comfort of their own home and reduces their need for hospitalization. Mercy’s virtual health care providers keep a close “medical eye” on the patient’s vitals through a secure internet connection, a tablet and wireless monitoring equipment. Each day, the patient can easily monitor weight, pulse, oxygen levels and blood pressure on devices that link to the tablet, all without leaving home. Readings alert the Mercy Virtual Care Center team to sudden changes, so they can reach out to the patient to see what’s happening and make changes to medication or simple suggestions. The program can decrease their medical costs and increase quality of life.

The experts at the Mercy Bariatric Center specialize in obesity, its causes, prevention and treatments. Bariatric surgery is divided into two different approaches: restrictive, where the stomach’s size and capacity are reduced, and malabsorption, where the stomach’s ability to absorb calories and nutrition is reduced. Mercy provides a variety of bariatric procedures including gastric sleeve, gastric banding and gastric bypass. In addition to partnering with the patient’s primary care physician, Mercy utilizes psychologists, dietitians, physical therapists, cardiologists, pulmonologists and surgeons to ensure the patient’s success.

Find out more about Mercy Hospital Joplin by visiting


Freeman Health System is in its 94th year delivering exceptional, quality health care to Joplin and its surrounding communities in the four-state area. With the largest network of physicians and providers, Freeman offers more than 70 specialties to families and individuals. Statistics and outcomes can be measured in patient visits, surgeries and births, but they do not tell the full story.

Freeman leads the way in cardiac and vascular care, orthopedics, sports medicine, women’s services, number of births, mental health services and stroke care, thanks to skilled, dedicated and compassionate caregivers who are invested in the community.

Freeman’s free online health risk assessments help patients to recognize possible symptoms and warning signs for heart disease, diabetes and weight loss surgery. Individuals are encouraged to follow up as needed with their physician or health care provider and research more to become more familiar with symptoms.

To reach and strengthen the community through wellness education and outreach, Freeman offers a variety of services that extend outside of the walls of the hospital. Freeman Screen Team provides quality diagnostic health care screenings throughout the region. Freeman Screen Team specializes in providing care to those who might not seek medical services due to costs or transportation by offering low-cost health screenings. In addition to the early detection screenings, blood pressure and blood cholesterol/lipid panel testing, nutritional counseling is provided to those attending these special events. Early detection screenings include abdominal aortic aneurysm, peripheral arterial disease and stroke/carotid artery screenings, as well as an osteoporosis risk assessment.

Freeman is also active in neighborhood schools, providing school-based clinics that benefit students, faculty and parents, saving time and helping keep kids stay in class (if possible). With school-based clinics in Carl Junction, Neosho, Seneca and McDonald counties, Freeman strives to offer the best physical and mental health care available.

Additionally, Freeman is the only Children’s Miracle Network Hospital in a 70-mile radius. Families receive assistance with medical needs such as prescriptions, medical equipment and specialty care through local donations to CMNH. One-hundred percent of every dollar raised locally stays local – donations help children and their families in 14 southwest Missouri, northeast Oklahoma and southeast Kansas counties.

Freeman WellBalance program earned the 2018 Nation’s Best and Brightest in Wellness award from the National Association for Business Resources. Freeman is the only program in the area to earn this recognition. The program honors companies that promote employee wellbeing, worksite health and wellness. WellBalance is the Freeman employee wellness program that promotes healthy lifestyles through free health screenings, fitness classes and workshops and seminars on topics ranging from financial management to physical fitness and nutrition.

In 2018, Freeman also earned the American Heart Association’s Workplace Health Achievement Gold Award for its WellBalance program. Freeman was also recognized with more distinctions, including almost 100 separate categories from CareChex – a quality rating system that helps consumers make informed decisions about where to obtain their health care.

For more information about Freeman or more health information, visit

Freeman Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine

Whether you’re a college athlete who tears a knee ligament during a game, or the weekend warrior who experiences shoulder pain, Freeman Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine provides high quality, personalized care to help you recover quickly and effectively. Their nationally recognized, board-certified orthopaedic physicians understand your injury and how it relates to your sport. That’s why so many area colleges and high school sports teams choose their expert orthopaedic team to treat their aches and injuries.

Expert Orthopaedic Team

With their expertise and surgical skills, Freeman orthopaedic physicians are the region’s specialists in hip and knee replacement, as well as corrective surgery on shoulders, elbows, ankles and feet. Physicians use the most advanced techniques, including digital diagnostic imaging and minimally invasive surgeries, to provide cutting-edge treatments, procedures and services including:

  • Fracture treatment
  • Total joint replacement (knee, hip, shoulder)
  • Joint revision (knee, hip)
  • Sports care and injuries
  • General orthopaedic care (sprains, strains and tears of the muscles and ligaments)
  • Arthroscopy (hip, knee, shoulder, elbow, ankle, hip resurfacing)

Keeping You in the Game
Their sports medicine team includes professional physicians, trainers and therapists who provide athletic injury assessment, treatment and rehabilitation. Athletic trainers provide game coverage for area schools and perform on-site injury assessment and treatment during athletic events.

Rehabilitation Solutions
Your individualized treatment plan may include rehabilitation solutions, on an inpatient or outpatient basis, from their dedicated, experienced therapy staff. Therapeutic services with hands-on rehabilitation focused on regaining strength, endurance and skills help you return to enjoying life.

No matter what your injury, or where you live, Freeman Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine is ready to meet your needs.

For more information, visit or to make an appointment (no referral needed), call (417) 347.5400.


Orthopaedic Specialists of the Four States (Ortho Four States) is the area’s largest and most comprehensive neck-to-toe orthopedic, spine, sports medicine, physical therapy, aquatic rehabilitation, joint replacement and revision and interventional pain management care group and facility – serving Joplin and the region with a compassionate patient-first approach to world-class care.

Unlike the hospital system, Ortho Four States was founded and is operated by fellowship-trained and board-certified orthopedic, spine and sports medicine doctors and surgeons, focused on a mission to restore patients’ quality of life.

From medical treatments and physical therapy, to non-surgical and minimally invasive procedures, to the most challenging musculoskeletal surgeries, Orthopaedic Specialists of the Four States works to eliminate the pain and suffering caused by injuries and disorders of the bones, spine and joints.

Their comprehensive state-of-the-art medical campus offers the latest equipment and technology, designed to provide treatment in one comfortable and convenient location. They deliver the caliber of care expected from the nation’s top facilities and serve those needing neck-to-toe treatment.

Referrals are not needed. Orthopaedic Specialists of the Four States accepts most insurance including Blue Cross Blue Shield, Medicare and many Freeman and Mercy directed plans.


Pediatric specialty care is available to families in Joplin and surrounding communities thanks to collaboration between Children’s Mercy Kansas City and Freeman Health Systems in Joplin. Children’s Mercy is committed to working with family providers by employing pediatricians who provide world-class subspecialty care directly to patients in the Joplin community. Children’s Mercy Joplin moved to a new location in 2018, 1801 W. 32nd St., Building A. The affiliation of the two institutions benefits children in southwest Missouri because it improves access to care, quality of care and affordability by reducing travel time and expenses for families.

Children’s Mercy Joplin offers rotating sub-specialty clinics in 10 specialties – cardiology, electrophysiology, cystic fibrosis, endocrinology/diabetes, gastroenterology, hematology/ oncology, hemophilia, nephrology, plastic surgery and urology. In addition, more than 20 pediatric sub-specialty clinics are available via telemedicine. The new location allowed Children’s Mercy Joplin to double in size. It now has 10 exam rooms, a larger waiting area, more parking with direct access to the building, a point-of-care lab and additional work space for staff.

“We know there is a demand for pediatric specialty services in Joplin,” said Marshaun Butler, vice president, Children’s Mercy outreach & regional practices. “For almost 25 years, our specialists have traveled to southwest Missouri/southeast Kansas to provide convenient appointments to local children. This expansion allows us to increase our clinic capacity to better serve these patients and families.”ronald mcdonald house charities of the four

Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Four States believes nothing else should matter when a family is focused on the health of their child – not where they can afford to stay, where they will get their next meal or where they will lay their head at night to rest. We believe that when a child is hospitalized, the love and support of family is as powerful as the strongest medicine prescribed.

Through our two programs, RMHC helps families with sick children stay close to each other and the care and resources they need when they need it most. RMHC provides access to quality health care and enables family-centered care.

Ronald McDonald House of the Four States opened its doors on July 27, 1998. This cornerstone program serves families of seriously ill children and ill expectant mothers being treated at Freeman Health System and Mercy Hospital Joplin.

Twenty-four hours per day, seven days a week the 14,000 square-foot facility at 3402 South Jackson in Joplin offers families a home away from home, the support of other families experiencing the same circumstances and the comfort and care provided by staff and over 140 volunteers.

Ronald McDonald Family Room opened in November 2017 in Mercy Hospital Joplin. When a child is critically ill, parents need a break from the ongoing stress of beeping monitors and busy intensive care units. The 850-square-foot room on the sixth floor of Mercy Hospital offers families a place of respite, relaxation and privacy just steps away from their child’s bedside, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.