Area residents have access to several quality medical centers, specialists, and various elder care options throughout the region. Rock Springs houses the largest medical facility: Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County (MHSC). This is a full-service, acute-care hospital, with an emergency department that is a state-designated area trauma center. MHSC offers more than a dozen full-service specialty clinics including Sweetwater Regional Cancer Center, Sweetwater Sleep Center, and Sweetwater Walk-In Clinic.
Ensuring a community – no matter how small in population nor how big in size – has the vital healthcare it needs has been the No. 1 priority of Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County for more than 130 years. With just 5,000 people living in Sweetwater County’s 10,491 square miles, plans were laid and dedication ceremonies for a hospital were celebrated on December 2, 1893.
A December 7, 1893 story in the Rock Springs Miner reported: “A day of suspension from labor and rejoicing. The corner stone of the Miners’ Hospital laid with ceremony in the presence of a large number of people.
“Saturday, the 2nd day of December, was the day of all days in Rock Springs. Former events of great importance dwarfed into insignificance when compared with the magnitude of Saturday’s achievements. Nothing has ever occurred in this city that can compare with it in bringing forth good results to mankind. Our citizens were a unit in appropriately celebrating the laying of the corner stone of the Miners’ Hospital and from far and near came visitors to share in our triumph. The entire city was in holiday attire, bunting and evergreens being the principal decorations.”
The need and desire to provide vital care to the community has remained strong over the years.
On May 5, 1978, the hospital closed its doors at the original C Street site and the new $13 million Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County admitted its first patient. In 1984, a major renovation provided ambulatory diagnostic facilities. Another large-scale renovation in 2010 added even more space and services.
An 80,000-square-foot building that houses the Specialty Clinics of Sweetwater Memorial. The variety of clinics include General Surgery, Internal Medicine, Obstetrics and Women’s Health, Orthopedics & Sports Medicine, Otolaryngology (ear, nose, & throat), Nephrology, Neurology, Pediatrics, Pulmonology, and Urology.
The building at 1180 College Drive also features expanded services such as Rehabilitation Services (physical, occupational and speech therapy), Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation, Sweetwater Sleep Center, and the 8-chair Sweetwater Dialysis Center. The showpiece of the building is the full-service Sweetwater Regional Cancer Center. This state-of-the-art center, designed with help from the Huntsman Cancer Institute, is the only one of its kind in southwestern Wyoming. It includes full-service Radiation Oncology and Hematology/Medical Oncology.
The Family & Occupational Medicine Clinics of Sweetwater Memorial opened its doors at 3000 College Drive in April 2017. Sweetwater Walk-In Clinic opened in March 2020 at the same location. The hospital at 1200 College Drive offers Emergency Care, Intensive Care, Medical/Surgical care, Surgery and Same-Day Surgery, a full-service Laboratory, and much more. Its Medical Imaging Center includes the first and only large-bore MRI in the area, ultrasound, nuclear medicine, PET scan, 3D digital mammography, and the region’s only 64-slice CT scanner.
130 years later, Sweetwater County is now home to about 42,000 people. Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County is the sixth-largest employer with about 550 employees, including more than 40 employed physicians and providers.