True Care Through the Years

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On March 19, 1918, the new City Hospital at 462 Grider Street opened as a public general hospital with 415 beds and the resources to provide special care for tuberculosis patients and those with acute communicable diseases. The following year, the City Hospital School of Nursing was founded , becoming the first diploma nursing school in Buffalo to include university courses, racially integrate students, and admit men. The transformation of an 82-acre farm on Buffalo’s East Side into a healthcare campus opened a century of delivering quality medical services that continues today at ECMC. From the early vision of physicians, nurses, and support staff who addressed the healthcare needs of Buffalo’s and Western New York’s residents at the turn of the 20th Century to today’s dedicated caregivers in the 21st Century, this healthcare institution continues to provide excellent patient care across multiple medical service lines, ensuring that every individual receives the care they expect and deserve.

This webpage is designed to share the remarkable history of ECMC as we continue to move forward. Please enjoy the legacy of this groundbreaking healthcare institution that has for 100 years delivered True Care to the residents of our region, maintaining the highest level of quality healthcare services for all.

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  • December 28 – On March 19, 1918, the new City Hospital at 462 Grider Street opens as a public general hospital with 415 beds and the resources to provide special care for tuberculosis patients and those with acute communicable diseases.
  • December 29 – City Hospital School of Nursing is founded in 1919. It was the first diploma nursing school in Buffalo to include university courses, racially integrate students, and admit men.
  • December 30 – The Crippled Children’s School opens at City Hospital in 1924. Starting with one teacher and 12 pupils, within ten years it grew to 15 teachers and 195 pupils.
  • December 31 – In 1926, Dr. Daniel H. Squire, the dean of UB School of Dentistry, establishes a dental department at City Hospital, the first hospital department in the country to be part of a dental school.
  • January 1 – Buffalo City Hospital’s three-year residency program in medicine begins in 1930. Also in the 1930s, the hospital receives the full and unqualified approval of the American College of Surgeons as being acceptable for graduate training in surgery and surgical specialties.
  • January 2 – In 1931, City Hospital creates a 70-acre arboretum with a water garden. With more than 850 varieties of shrubs, evergreens, flowering plants and trees, the grounds are regarded as a national horticultural showplace.
  • January 3 – City Hospital is approved by the American Medical Association for a student doctors teaching program in 1936 and the AMA ranked it among the best-staffed and highest credentialed hospitals in the country.
  • January 4 – Schizophrenia is successfully treated at City Hospital in 1937. Dr. Emerick Friedman demonstrates results of 75 to 80 percent remissions using a recently discovered metrazol shock treatment.
  • January 5 – City Hospital opens the first blood bank in Buffalo in 1938. The blood bank eliminates the frantic effort to get blood in emergencies when oftentimes 20 or 25 persons were tested before blood of the right type and untainted by disease was found.
  • January 6 – On January 24, 1939, the name of Buffalo City Hospital is changed to the Dr. Edward J. Meyer Memorial Hospital to honor the man who had served as president of its board of managers for nearly 24 years, from the inception of the hospital to the death of Dr. Meyer in 1935.
  • January 7 – Eva Noles, the first African-American student at the Buffalo City Hospital School of Nursing, graduates at the top of her class in 1940 and later goes on to a distinguished career as a registered nurse at Meyer Memorial and Roswell Park Cancer Institute.
  • January 8 – The Outpatient Fracture Clinic opens in 1940, the first in the city. Today, ECMC’s Center for Orthopaedic Care offers comprehensive orthopedic care to manage disorders and injuries of the musculoskeletal (muscle and bone) system.
  • January 9 – In 1941, Dr. John D. Stewart is appointed surgeon in chief at Meyer Memorial and a surgical teaching program comes into being and grows to vigorous maturity under his directorship.
  • January 10 – Dr. William Clarke is appointed to succeed Dr. Walter Goodale as superintendent of Meyer Memorial in 1941. Dr. Clarke becomes only the second superintendent in the history of the hospital.
  • January 11 – In 1942, the buildings for the treatment of tuberculosis at the Edward J. Meyer Memorial Hospital were dedicated to Dr. Walter Goodale, the first superintendent of City Hospital, with this tribute: “Positive in his considered beliefs, emphatic and forceful in his advocacy of any cause to which he subscribed, he maintained his principles with small regard to personal interests or expediency.”
  • January 12 – Control of the hospital passes from the City of Buffalo to the County of Erie in 1946. As the county hospital, it is considered a general hospital because all patients are admitted regardless of the nature of their illness. It is a public hospital because it accepts those patients regardless of their ability to pay.

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