Our History & Progress

UnityPoint Health - Methodist was founded through the efforts of deaconesses of the Methodist Episcopal Church. On May 24, 1900, Methodist opened as Deaconess Home and Hospital, with 20 beds and its own school of nursing. The first permanent building was dedicated in 1917 and the name was changed to Methodist Hospital.

UnityPoint Health - Proctor traces its roots back to Cottage Hospital, which was founded in 1882. In 1907, the hospital was renamed after benefactor John C. Proctor. The hospital has been located in north Peoria since the 1950s.

On Oct. 1, 2011, Methodist became the eighth senior affiliate of UnityPoint Health, the nation's 5th largest nondenominational health system. In 2013, Proctor Hospital affiliated with Methodist, and the two organizations formed a unified health system: UnityPoint Health - Methodist | Proctor, a leader in health care in Central Illinois.

Our services have expanded to include:

  • Methodist Heart, Lung and Vascular Institute, named one of America's 100 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals in 1999 and 2005
  • A comprehensive cancer program
  • 2 Emergency Departments with a Level II Trauma Center on the Methodist Campus
  • State-of-the-art diagnostic imaging services including CT, PET, MRI and nuclear medicine 
  • Family-centered birthing services and a perinatologist for high-risk pregnancies
  • A modern rehabilitation unit, which assists stroke and accident victims
  • The area's most experienced sleep disorders center
  • An ambulatory surgery program 
  • The Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine
  • The area's most comprehensive mental health services, with programs for adults, seniors, adolescents, and children
  • The Diabetes Care Center
  • A multi-disciplinary Pain Management Clinic with fellowship-trained pain management specialists
  • UnityPoint Clinic and Proctor First Care - our network of primary care and specialty physicians
  • Methodist College
  • The Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery
  • The Hult Center for Healthy Living

Methodist is a teaching affiliate of the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria and home to the Family Practice Residency Program.

Our Historical Timeline

Since 1871, Methodist and Proctor have grown significantly in bricks and mortar as well as in services and programs.

1882

Cottage Hospital is founded.

1898

Miss Minna Riggs -  UnityPoint Health - Peoria

Miss Minna Riggs, a deaconesses of the Methodist Episcopal Church, conceives the idea of a home for Deaconesses. Deaconess Ida Phillips and others expand the plan to include a hospital.

A two-story home known as the Bunn property, at 221 Northeast Glen Oak, is purchased and remodeling begins to create what will become Methodist.

1900

Deaconess Home -  UnityPoint Health - Peoria

Deaconess Home and Hospital opens on May 24 in the former Bunn house. Miss C.A. Williams was Superintendent of the 20-bed hospital.

At the same time, a school of nursing was established with five young women graduating two years later.

1907

Cottage Hospital is renamed Proctor Hospital.

1911

Construction of the first permanent building of today's Methodist Medical Center begins.

1917

Methodist's name officially changes to The Methodist Hospital of Central Illinois.

1930s & '40s

Innovations at Methodist include one of the nation's first x-ray schools and a new children's ward noted for being one of the most completely equipped in the country and the only such unit between Chicago and St. Louis.

1950s

The Glen Oak wing opens in 1953, bringing the hospital's capacity to over 300 beds. The modern, well-equipped Hamilton Wing follows in 1959. This decade also sees the arrival of the only public EEG machine in downstate Illinois, the first mechanical kidney (one of only four in the nation) and the area's first hospital mental health department.

Meantime, Proctor constructs its north Peoria campus. 

1960s

The generosity of the Arthur G. Heidrich family enables Methodist to install the first cobalt unit for treating cancer patients in downstate Illinois. Other innovations include the area's first coronary intensive care unit (one of only 31 in the nation) and a new coronary care unit with the only telemetry (heart monitor) system in Illinois outside of Chicago. The Hamilton wing expands and Helen House opens as a dormitory for the Methodist School of Nursing.

1970s

In 1971, the Methodist Heart Care Center is the first to perform the new cardiac catheterization procedure. In 1975, the first open-heart surgery is performed at Methodist, marking the start of the area's longest-running open heart program.

Other advances at Methodist include the first ambulatory surgery center in Illinois, Peoria's first cancer care unit, the area's first pain management clinic, and the establishment of a Family Practice Residency Program to train the next generation of family physicians. Methodist is also selected as the location of the first-ever affiliate of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

A $22 million expansion program consisting of a new four-story addition connected to a seven-level parking deck is constructed. Above the parking facilities is a two-story office building for physicians.

In 1975, the hospital's name changes to Methodist Medical Center of Illinois. The Methodist Medical Center Foundation is established to support the hospital in its mission of helping and healing.

1980s

Expanded facilities include the Crescent addition and the Methodist Diagnostic Center. Methodist also purchases the former Ramada Inn and remodels it as Methodist East Campus, home to the School of Nursing, Methodist Family Child Care Center and other services. Methodist opens the area's first sleep disorders center, establishes the area's longest-running Hospice program, and introduces Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and mobile mammography services to Central Illinois.

1990s

The only Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Center in downstate Illinois opens at Methodist. Methodist is also the first in Peoria to use DEXA for osteoporosis testing and the first to offer Open MRI.

New facilities include the beautiful Methodist Atrium and the three-story Crescent Pavilion for critical care. The first Methodist MedPointe walk-in centers are developed to meet patient demand for convenient quality medical care without an appointment.

Today

UnityPoint Health - Methodist | Proctor today includes Methodist, a 330-bed hospital with almost 600 board-certified physicians; and Proctor, a 220-bed hospital. The Methodist | Proctor commitment to quality has resulted in numerous awards and national recognition for excellence. A new outpatient facility, Methodist North at Allen Road, opened in 2010. UnityPoint Clinic and Proctor First Care, networks of primary care and specialty providers, have offices throughout Central Illinois. Methodist College has grown to more than 600 students pursuing a certificate, a baccalaureate degree or a graduate degree.