beth israel deaconess medical center a harvard medical school teaching hospital

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Early Growth

The Beth Israel Hospital Association purchased this private estate on Townsend Street in Roxbury in 1916. The building was later demolished and the Jewish Memorial Hospital and Rehabilitation Center was built in its place.Both hospitals outgrew their quarters in their first decade, so the Deaconess Hospital selected the Longwood site for their new building. In 1907, the new three-story, 50-bed New England Deaconess Hospital opened with a focus on providing surgical care. It was also known for its strength in its nursing care and nursing training program.

When Beth Israel first opened in 1916, hospitals were already providing many more services than surgery. Beth Israel organized physicians into a Medical Service, Surgical Service and Special Services, which included laryngology, neurology, genitourinary surgery, gynecology, ophthalmologic surgery, pathology, serology-bacteriology, dermatology, radiology, anesthesiology and dental surgery. In 1918, the hospital opened a school of nursing to attract Jewish women into the profession, although all qualified students were accepted. Recognizing that patients needed help dealing with non-medical aspects of their illnesses, the hospital opened its social service department in 1920. Over the next few years, Beth Israel developed outpatient clinics in diabetes, baby care and tuberculosis.

Contact Information

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
330 Brookline Avenue, Boston, MA 02215
Main Switchboard: 617-667-7000
Find a Doctor: 800-667-3000
Directions by Phone: 617-667-3000
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