Health Ministries Association (HMA): Since 1989

During the 1960‐1970′s the Rev. Dr. Granger Westberg, a hospital chaplain and medical school professor, began the establishment of wholistic care clinics in churches, staffed by a physician, nurse, social worker and pastoral counselor.

In the early 1980′s the concept of the parish nurse began. By 1986, special training programs were established at the Lutheran Hospital, Park Ridge, IL and the Lutheran Hospital , Des Moines, IA.  Through its corporate structure, Lutheran General Hospital System formed programs for congregational partnerships and established the Parish Nurse Resource Center. An advisory committee began exploring the establishment of a membership organization to further promote the concept of health ministries/parish nursing.

September 28, 1989, The Health Ministries Association was established at a meeting prior to the annual Parish Nurse Resource Center’s annual conference in Chicago, IL. “We are thrilled to know that the Church is finally becoming aware of the tremendous potential in giving leadership to the whole field of preventive medicine, or what might be better called “Wellness Care.” (Westberg; Connections; Vol.1 #1, Aug. 1989)