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Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas

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Our History 

A Rich History... A Promising Future

Baylor University Medical Center is more than 100 years old and continues to abide by its mission to provide exemplary health care, medical education, research and community service for the citizens it serves.

The First 50 Years: 1903 - 1953

1903

Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas is established as Texas Baptist Memorial Sanitarium. Chartered on Oct. 16, 1903, by the State of Texas, the hospital began in a 14-room renovated house.

Baylor is founded through the efforts of several individuals. Initial efforts began in 1900 with Charles M. Rosser, M.D., founder of the Baylor College of Medicine, who saw the need for “a hospital of great importance” for a growing city like Dallas, and which would support the medical school. Secondly, Rev. George W. Truett, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Dallas, convinces Dallas citizens “to build a great humanitarian hospital,” and thirdly, Colonel C.C. Slaughter, devout Baptist and wealthy cattleman, gives a major gift of $50,000 to establish the hospital.

The Baptist General Convention of Texas agrees to help support and administer the hospital, as well as raise funds for a new hospital building.

1909

Texas Baptist Memorial Sanitarium moves into a new 250-bed facility and opens as the Southwest’s most modern hospital of its kind.

Texas Baptist Memorial Sanitarium nursing program (Baylor University School of Nursing) begins. Nursing students provide primary care for patients during their 12-hour shifts and attend classes during non-work hours. The nurses are housed in the original 14-room Texas Baptist Memorial Sanitarium.

1918

The Nurses Home and Training School facility opens on the hospital campus, which is made possible by a generous donation from Col. C.C. Slaughter. It is his last gift to Baylor before his death in 1919. His gifts to Baylor are estimated to be more than $200,000.

1921

Texas Baptist Memorial Sanitarium becomes Baylor Hospital to reflect its relationship with Baylor University in Waco, Texas. The hospital, located in downtown Dallas, is surrounded by the Baylor College of Medicine, Baylor College of Dentistry, Baylor University School of Nursing and Baylor School of Pharmacy.

1929

“Baylor Plan” is developed by Baylor administrators during the Great Depression to help area citizens afford hospital care. It is the first prepaid hospital insurance plan in the United States and predecessor of Blue Cross.

1936

Baylor Hospital is renamed Baylor University Hospital.

1937

Florence Nightingale Maternity Hospital opens on the Baylor University Hospital campus.

1943

Because of financial difficulties, Baylor College of Medicine accepts a grant from a foundation and relocates to Houston.

Lawrence Payne becomes administrator of Baylor University Hospital. He realizes that in order to survive the tough economic period since the Depression and relocation of the Baylor College of Medicine from the Dallas campus during WWII, the hospital must build new facilities to attract private patients in addition to charity patients as the association with the medical school dictated.

1946

To advance the quality of the hospital, further the cause of medical research and supervise the teaching program for residents and interns, Baylor appoints its first chiefs of service for the hospital’s medical departments and the 13 chiefs appointed also serve as Baylor’s first medical board.

Many of these physicians are professors at Baylor College of Medicine and choose not to move but stay in Dallas at Baylor University Hospital.

1947

Baylor University Hospital initiates the formation of the American Association of Blood Banks.

1950

The seven-story, 436-bed George W. Truett Memorial Hospital opens on the Baylor University Hospital campus. This “hospital of tomorrow” features air conditioning and telephones in all patient rooms and makes Baylor University Hospital the fifth largest general hospital in the United States.

Building Services and Community: 1954 - 2008

1954

Baylor receives first cobalt machine to treat cancer patients. Technology for diagnosis and treatment of cancer was still in its infancy. Prior to receiving the cobalt machine, Baylor had only three small radiation therapy machines for both diagnosis and treatment.

1958

Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor, Paul Ellis, M.D., and Leroy Kleinsassor, M.D., perform Baylor’s first open heart surgery. A few months earlier in 1957, they were part of a team to perform Dallas’ first open heart surgery.

1959

Baylor University Hospital is renamed Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas1 to reflect the multiple hospitals and services on the Dallas campus. A new and expanded Women and Children’s Hospital replaces Florence Nightingale Maternity Hospital.

1960

Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform the Southwest’s first pacemaker implant.

1961

A gift from Charles A. Sammons and the Reserve Life Insurance Company funds the Sammons department of virology, the United States’ first clinically oriented laboratory.

1968

Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform the medical center’s first coronary bypass operation. Women’s and Children’s Hospital is renamed Karl and Esther Hoblitzelle Memorial Hospital.

1970

The 200-bed Erik and Margaret Jonsson Medical and Surgical Hospital opens at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

1972

The 300-bed Carr P. Collins Hospital opens at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas. A. Webb Roberts Center for Continuing Education opens at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

1973

Twin medical towers, named in honor of J.K. and Susie L. Wadley and Albert S. and Velma Barnett, open as part of the Baylor Medical Plaza which includes physician offices and a 75-room hotel, and is located at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

1976

Baylor installs the first computerized axial tomographic scanner (CAT scan) in North Texas. Baylor Charles A. Sammons Cancer Center opens at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

1977

H.L. and Ruth Ray Hunt Heart Center opens at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

1978

The Baylor University Medical Center Foundation is created with an initial endowment of $5 million to support the activities of Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

1981

Baylor Health Care System is formally established with Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas as its flagship hospital and corporate headquarters.

1982

Baylor Research Institute opens at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

1983

Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas becomes the first hospital in the Southwest to have a nuclear magnetic resonance scanner (MRI). Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform North Texas’ first marrow transplant.

1984

Baylor Institute for Rehabilitation opens on the Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas campus.

1985

Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform Texas’ first successful adult-to-adult liver transplant.

1986

The 17-story A. Webb Roberts Hospital opens at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

1988

Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform Texas’ first unrelated donor marrow transplant. Baylor Health Care System, Methodist Hospitals of Dallas and Presbyterian Health Care System sponsor CareFlite helicopter ambulance service. Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas performs the first biliary lithotripsy for gallstones in the United States.

1989

Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform Dallas’ first lung transplant and three years later perform Dallas’ first double lung transplant. Baylor purchases Gaston Episcopal Hospital on Gaston Avenue and moves Baylor Institute for Rehabilitation into the building to give it a larger facility in which to provide services to its patients.

1990

Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform world’s fifth combined heart/kidney transplant. The transplant program also performs the nation’s first bridge to heart transplant using an artificial heart assist device.

1991

Baylor Tom Landry Health & Wellness Center opens at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

1993

U.S. News & World Report “America’s Best Hospitals” guide recognizes Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas as one of the best hospitals in the nation — an honor the medical center again receives for 21 consecutive years. Recognized specialties include AIDS, cancer, cardiology and cardiac surgery, endocrinology, gastroenterology, geriatrics, gynecology, neurology and neurosurgery, ophthalmology, orthopaedics, otolaryngology, pulmonary disease, rehabilitation, rheumatology and urology. Baylor Senior Health Center opens in Dallas’ Casa Linda neighborhood.

1994

Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform the Southwest’s first small bowel transplant. Baylor University Medical Center Foundation is renamed Baylor Health Care System Foundation. Baylor Health Care System establishes HealthTexas Provider Network, a physician network provider organization, to assist the system in becoming an integrated health care delivery system.

1995

Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform the medical center’s first kidney and pancreas transplant.

1996

Baylor Institute for Immunology Research is established at Baylor Research Institute.

1997

Baylor Health Care System establishes autonomy on March 31 from the Baylor University board of regents in Waco, Texas. Baylor Health Care System agrees to continue its commitment to support the University’s nursing and medical education programs. Surgeons on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform the world’s first extracorporeal perfusion (bridge to transplantation) using a genetically engineered pig liver.

1999

Baylor Health Care System and United Surgical Partners International partner to form Texas Health Ventures Group, which develops and manages 20 outpatient surgery centers throughout North Texas. The Zelig H. Lieberman Research Building, which houses Baylor Research Institute and Baylor Institute for Immunology Research, opens on the Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas campus. The building is named in honor of Zelig H. Lieberman, M.D., a surgeon on staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas.

2000

Baylor Health Care System is the nation’s first health care system to provide supplemental newborn screening for more than 30 inherited metabolic diseases. Baylor Health Care System Foundation hosts its first annual Celebrating Women Luncheon, benefiting the W. H. and Peggy Smith Baylor Sammons Breast Center.

2002

Baylor Jack and Jane Hamilton Heart and Vascular Hospital1 opens on the Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas campus. Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas acquires three outpatient imaging centers.

2003

Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas celebrates its 100-year anniversary.

2004

Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas receives its first Magnet Award for “Excellence in Nursing Services” from the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

2005

Physicians on the medical staff at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas perform North Texas’ first islet cell transplant and Texas’ first successful intestinal transplant.

2006

Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas begins its $53 million expansion of the Emergency Department (completed in January 2008). Baylor Research Institute receives a $6.2 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to develop the Baylor Center for Lupus Research and $2.9 million from the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases and Alliance for Lupus Research to expand research of the disease. Baylor Health Center at North Dallas opens.

2007

Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas is the first hospital in the United States to receive the Gold Seal of Approval from The Joint Commission for its Ventricular Assist Device program.

2008

Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas opened an expanded Emergency Department with 86 treatment room, including 4 trauma rooms.