For almost 75 years, the Catholic Health Association, through Health Progress, has illuminated the constantly challenging issues facing the Catholic healing ministry. The journal has undergone face-lifts in keeping pace with advances in communications techniques. In 1984 its name was changed from Hospital Progress to reflect our understanding of healthcare as encompassing an integrated continuum beyond the acute care hospital. But through all its changes, Health Progress has never lost sight of its mission — to provide CHA members with the information they need to keep pace with change.
In recent years Health Progress has concentrated on clinical and corporate ethics, health policy, changes in the delivery of care, and Catholic identity. Though these are very current concerns, CHA members have struggled with them, in different forms, throughout the association's history. We discovered this connection when we did research for "What's Past Is Prologue," which describes the key issues Health Progress has addressed as today's complex healthcare system developed during this century.
Martin E. Marty's article, ("Can We Still Hear the Call?") which anchors this anniversary issue, asks the most urgent and essential question for leaders in Catholic healthcare today — How is the Catholic tradition relevant in a pluralistic, individualistic society? Analyses of Catholic identity are a familiar thread in Health Progress; Marty challenges us to retrieve that thread and reengage a society that is hungry for the particular gifts Catholic healthcare can offer.
A diverse group of thinkers uses the occasion of the journal's anniversary to predict the key issues for healthcare providers entering the twenty-first century. Steven Schroeder, president of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, introduces the section with an astute assessment of the most difficult problems facing Catholic and other providers who "serve the public interest in healthcare in contemporary America."
For CHA staff, producing this anniversary issue meant extra research, editing, writing, and design. But the dedication of this special group of people came through, as it does in every issue of the journal — a dedication I believe is directly attributable to the conviction that our work makes a meaningful contribution to the ministry. We are especially gratified to mark our 75th year with a prestigious Gold Circle Award of Excellence, the top communications award from the American Society of Association Management.
In 1995, look for changes in Health Progress as we continue our efforts to make the journal easy to read and practical. With this issue we introduce a new contents page that helps you find what you need to know more easily. Sometime during the year, articles will also be available through HealthOnline and other electronic media. We will continue the article summaries that allow you to quickly glean the gist of an article. We will also continue to include the phone numbers of contact people at the end of articles whenever appropriate.
Copyright © 1995 by the Catholic Health Association of the United States
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