The Religious Sisters of Mercy of Alma moved to Jackson in the spring of 1981 at the invitation of some local citizens of the city, to work at the Jackson hospital, which at the time was called Jackson Municipal Hospital (now Sanford Jackson Medical Center). Over time, several Sisters who worked in nursing, administration and other health care professions came to Jackson. Thanks to the generosity of Clair Gilmore and other local businessmen, the Sisters were able to make a down payment on the clinic building in which Sacred Heart is now housed.
In 1996, Sister Marie Paul Lockerd, RSM, DO, finished her residency at Hennepin County Hospital, completed her certification in Family Medicine and started practicing at Sacred Heart Mercy Health Care Center. In May, 2010 Dr. Lockerd took a sabbatical for one year, during which time Sister Mary Rachel Nerbun, RSM, MD, and Sister Mariana Koonce, RSM, MD, practiced at Sacred Heart. In May, 2011, Dr. Lockerd returned from her sabbatical and Dr. Nerbun returned to Sacred Heart Clinic in Alma, Michigan. In September 2011, Sister Edith Mary Hart, RSM, DO, came to Sacred Heart after having completed her board certifications in Family Medicine and Geriatrics. Dr. Koonce moved to the Sisters’ community in Knoxville, Tennessee where she continues to work as a physician.