There has been a strong health care presence in Keokuk serving the Tri-State area since 1886.
St. Joseph Hospital began operation at the invitation of the Keokuk Medical College on April 28, 1886. Originally located outside the city limits, St. Joseph's began as a 15 bed institution. Reverend J. Orth later deeded property at 14th and Exchange Street and the hospital began operations from this site in 1887. Several additions were made over the years in 1865, 1904, 1918 and 1929 until the original buildings were replaced in 1960.
Until September 30, 1975, St. Joseph Hospital remained part of a number of Health facilities in Michigan, Illinois and Iowa operated by the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis of Peoria, Illinois.
In 1892, Mercy Hospital began operation in association with the Keokuk College of Physicians and Surgeons. In 1901, the original Mercy Hospital became the W.C. Graham Protestant Hospital and moved into new quarters at 15th and Fulton Street. Additions were made in 1908, 1928, 1951 and 1971. During various stages of construction the 1908 building was destroyed. The construction in 1971 left an unfinished second floor which was completed in the spring of 1975.
In 1914, the W.C. Graham Protestant Hospital's management was assumed by the Women's Home Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church. In 1929, the name was changed to Graham Protestant Hospital and in 1941 it was incorporated as Graham Hospital Association, a non-profit corporation and functioned as such until September 30, 1975.
On October 1, 1975, a consolidation and merger of Graham Hospital and St. Joseph Hospital was completed and an institution, Keokuk Area Hospital came into existence. On January 1, 2017, Keokuk Area Hospital officially affiliated with UnityPoint Health and continues to provide patient care, health information and educational resources to the tri-state area.