A Tale of Two Hospitals...that Became One
Throughout the last quarter of a century, both hospitals have made much advancement in patient care, medical education and research. Beth Israel was the first hospital to publish a patient's bill of rights and to develop a hospital-based ambulatory care program. It first developed an intranasal insulin spray for the treatment of diabetes and provided the first evidence that abnormalities in the visual system of the brain could help explain the problems of people with dyslexia. Cardiologists at Beth Israel developed the cardiac pacemaker and were among the first to conduct studies on the effectiveness of balloon angioplasty and other methods such as stent insertion to relieve obstructions of the coronary arteries.
The Deaconess had a leading role in the early studies of the cause, course and treatment of AIDS. Because of the Deaconess' long tradition in organ transplantation and immunological research, two Harvard Medical School professorships were established in transplantation.
In 1996, these two great institutions, neighbors for more than 50 years, merged to form Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. The new organization maintains and strengthens excellence in patient care, education and research in today's rapidly changing health care environment.
Today, with nearly three quarters of a million patient visits annually in and around Boston, Beth Israel Deaconess is rated as one of the top hospitals in the country. Through its affiliates, Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital-Needham and Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital-Milton, it serves a growing number of patients in Boston's western and southern suburbs. BIDMC offers outpatient centers in Lexington and Chelsea, several primary care practices in many communities throughout the greater Boston area, and is affiliated with community health centers in downtown Boston, Dorchester, Roxbury, Allston/Brighton, Quincy and other areas.
As one of the top four recipients of biomedical research funding from the National Institutes of health, research funding totals nearly $200 million annually. BIDMC researchers run more than 850 active sponsored projects and 200 clinical trials.