John Titus MatherJohn Titus Mather was a successful shipbuilder in Port Jefferson in the early part of the 20th century.

When he died in 1928, his will outlined his wishes for the care of his family and loved ones and instructed his executor to “Incorporate under the laws of the State of New York a non-sectarian charitable hospital, to be located in said village of Port Jefferson … so designed and constructed as to permit future enlargement, assuming that future needs may justify such action … It is my sincere hope that the citizens of Port Jefferson and vicinity will give their liberal and devoted support to said institution and endeavor to make it a success and a credit to the community.”

Mather Hospital in 1929

On December 29, 1929, Mr. Mather’s wishes were realized with the opening of the first general hospital in the Town of Brookhaven. With 54 beds, Mather Hospital was fully equipped with what was considered the finest X-ray, laboratory and surgical technology available. The Emergency Room was just that – a room with a single bed.

In accordance with Mr. Mather’s wishes, the hospital bearing his name grew along with the Town of Brookhaven. In August of 1962, a new wing was dedicated, giving the Hospital a new surgical suite, a new emergency facility and a new intensive care unit. The expansion also gave the Hospital a total of 110 beds.

In 1973, Mather Hospital undertook another expansion project, adding a new psychiatric unit and the most advanced electronic monitoring equipment for coronary care and the Intensive Care Unit, bringing the total number of beds in the hospital to 203.

Ten years later another wing was added, along with extensive renovation of the existing building and new equipment. Mather Hospital had now grown to 223 beds. By 1997, it reached its current bed count of 248.

In 1992 the Hospital opened what would later be renamed the Frey Family Foundation Medical Arts Building. The building now houses the Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence, the Infusion Center and administrative offices.

In 1998, Mather Hospital opened a new Ambulatory and Inpatient Surgical Pavilion, which in June 2001 was renamed the Matthew J. and Debra A. Cody Ambulatory and Inpatient Surgical Pavilion. The Cody Surgical Pavilion features state-of-the-art surgical suites and the da Vinci robotic surgical system.

In 2013, we received our first designation as a Magnet® Hospital. At the time only 7% of hospitals in the United States had earned Magnet designation, and only three other Long Island hospitals had earned that distinction. Mather Hospital was re-designated as a Magnet hospital in 2018. In 2014 we welcomed our first medical residents and became a teaching hospital. The first program was for Internal Medicine, and we subsequently added programs for Transitional Year (2015), Radiology and Psychiatry (2016) and Interventional radiology (2018).

In 2015 we opened the Calace Pavilion, a major commitment by the Hospital to address the current and future medical needs of the communities it serves. The new pavilion increased the number of single-bedded rooms at Mather, provided space for the growing Graduate Medical Education program and included a new conference center.

In January 2018 Mather became part of the Northwell Health system. Later that same year Mather earned its second Magnet® recognition from the American Nurses Credentialing Center for quality patient care, nursing excellence and innovations in professional nursing practice.

Mather Hospital opened a Cardiac Catheterization and Electrophysiology Lab in 2021, raising the level of heart care in our community by allowing the hospital to perform minimally invasive tests and procedures to diagnose and treat cardiovascular conditions.

A new Certified Nursing Assistant training and employment program was launched to address a shortage of CNAs. Individuals who successfully complete the four-week program and pass the New York State CNA exam  will are offered entry level healthcare jobs.

Kenneth Roberts retired in 2020 after 40 years with Mather Hospital, 36 as its third President. Kevin McGeachy, who joined Mather in 2020 as Senior Vice President for Administration, was named Executive Director in 2021.

Mather earned its third Magnet® recognition from the American Nurses Credentialing Center in 2022 with 13 exemplars, examples of excellence in nursing practice.

Mather Hospital in May 2023 broke ground on a new $52 million, 26,000-square-foot Emergency Department that will double the size of the current facility. In recognition of the tremendous support to Mather Hospital from the Frey Family of Port Jefferson, the new facility, scheduled to open in 2025, will be named the Frey Family Emergency Department.

In September 2023, Mather Hospital opened its new main lobby, designed to create a space that impresses upon each visitor that Mather is an exceptional healing environment. The renovation included interior design upgrades, security and access enhancements, and expanded spacious visitor seating.

Mather  launched a Cardiac Rehabilitation program in November 2023 designed to help those who have suffered a major cardiac event such as a heart attack regain their overall physical, mental, and social functioning. That same year Mather received a five-star rating from the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services and was named one of America’s 250 Best Hospitals by Healthgrades, a designation it received again in 2024.

The delivery of healthcare has changed dramatically since Mather Hospital first opened its doors in 1929. New surgical procedures are constantly introduced, existing procedures are improved and procedures that were once unique are now routine. Many procedures that once required a hospital stay and a long recovery can now be successfully performed on an outpatient basis. Hospital stays are shorter, but the demand for acute care is greater. Today, more than two-thirds of all surgery is performed on an outpatient basis.John Titus Mather wanted the hospital he dreamed of creating to be “a success and credit to the community.” Since 1929, that dream has clearly been realized.