Mercy Hospital NWA names Pianalto as president

Eric Pianalto has accepted the position of president, Mercy Hospital Northwest Arkansas after serving in the interim since July 31.

He will manage the next phase of Mercy’s community growth plan including the conversion of current hospital space into additional patient rooms, the expansion of the emergency department increasing both patient rooms and ambulance bays, and the addition of physician specialists including a neonatologist.

"We couldn't be happier with Eric's performance during this interim time. He has demonstrated both the business acumen and passion for the Mercy mission that is needed to drive us to be successful in the future.  He is exactly the right leader at this time in our history,” said Wayne Callahan, board chairman.


Pianalto attended the University of Arkansas and has a master’s degree in business administration. He has served as a Mercy leader for more than 19 years, including a 10-year tenure in Northwest Arkansas along with roles in Fort Smith, Oklahoma, and Mercy’s four-state health businesses.

Prior to serving as interim president, he served as chief operating officer of Mercy Clinic in Arkansas and Oklahoma. Pianalto, his wife Dawn, and their three children reside in the Northwest Arkansas area and have deep roots in the community.    

"Eric is such a strong and collaborative leader. His deep knowledge and strong communication skills will serve us well. I am looking forward to working together as we address the needs of our community,” said Dr. Stephen Goss, president of Mercy Clinic in Northwest Arkansas.

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In addition to expanding and enhancing hospital services, Mercy is opening new clinic locations in Centerton and downtown Rogers, as well as a 35,000 square foot multi-specialty clinic in Bella Vista.  Mercy’s expansion strategy reflects the area’s growing needs.

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