Ascension reveals new, unified branding campaign

Photo credit: St. John Providence Hospital

There will no longer be any doubt whether a hospital belongs to the Ascension health system. This week the nation's largest non-profit health system rolled out plans to rename all 2,500 of its sites of care under its brand name.

Hospitals in Michigan and Wisconsin, its two largest markets, will be among the first to adopt the new name, the organization announced. The Catholic health system includes 141 hospitals in 24 states and the District of Columbia. 

The branding strategy aims to make it clearer and easier for patients to access and navigate care within the system.

The switch began on Tuesday, as Ascension changed the name of its 15 Michigan hospitals and 24 Wisconsin facilities--for example, Detroit’s St. John Providence Hospital will become Ascension St. John Hospital.

Replacing signage at all the Michigan and Wisconsin facilities will take about a year and an ad campaign has been launched in the two states with the tagline “We Are Ascension” to inform patients of the changes, Nick Ragone, Ascension’s chief marketing and communications officer, told the St. Louis Business Journal, though he declined to specify how much the initiative will cost.

In addition to unifying the services the system offers under one brand, Ragone told Hospitals & Health Networks that the new "One Ascension" branding campaign will help retain staff and promote engagement, as all employees will be unified under one Ascension Ministry umbrella instead of a variety of individual ones.

“Years ago when we created Ascension, we made the decision that there was brand equity in the local names,” Tony Tersigni, president and CEO of Ascension, told the Business Journal. “We still believe that, but over the past 16 years, we’ve developed a reputation nationally as Ascension. Now we want to bring those brands together and leverage both into one Ascension.”

Below is one of the television ads the system will run in Michigan to promote the new brand: