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Temple University Hospital Celebrating 125 Years of Providing Indispensable Health Care

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Temple University Hospital

Temple University Hospital (TUH), founded in 1892, will kick-off its historic 125th anniversary during the hospital’s annual Employee Recognition Ceremony and Reception. 

During the ceremony, employees who have spent 20 or more years at TUH will be honored by their supervisors and hospital leadership for their dedication and commitment to serving patients and the community.  Among the honorees are four employees who have worked at TUH for over 50 years (including one for 55 years!), and a family whose service to TUH spans three generations.

Throughout the winter and spring, the hospital’s 125th anniversary will be recognized with various events and programs to honor the community, the employees and the citizens of Philadelphia who have helped TUH carry forward its proud mission of service.

125 Years and Counting: Honoring Our Dedicated Employees

The TUH team is comprised of approximately 4,000 employees, dedicated to helping TUH achieve its mission by going above and beyond in what they do.

When an Amtrak train derailed a few miles from TUH, flooding the hospital with more than 60 emergency victims, the highest number in the city, off-the-clock physicians and staff from all levels flocked to the hospital, volunteering to provide any help they could, from treating patients to offering comfort to victims and their families.

When San Francisco General Hospital donated pizzas to TUH thanking them for their outstanding efforts in aiding Amtrak victims, the TUH Emergency Department knew they had to pay the deed forward. After the tragic June 2016 attack of an Orlando LGBTQ nightclub, TUH staff donated a meal of Orlando-favorite Dickey’s Barbecue to the hardworking emergency staff at Orlando Regional Medical Center.

In yet another example, 33-year-old Bobby Adams was under intensive care at TUH for nearly three months when it was determined he would require a double-lung transplant. In addition to planning his surgery, TUH helped Bobby host his wedding the same day of his transplant, right from his hospital bed. Several TUH team members from surgery, to admissions, to housekeeping came together to make the day not only a momentous achievement in Bobby’s health, but a life-changing day for him and his wife.

“It’s through the dedication of our employees and their commitment to supporting TUH that we have been able to achieve such impressive milestones over the last 125 years,” stated Verdi J. DiSesa, MD, MBA, President and CEO of Temple University Hospital. “I want to thank every individual who has spent time with Temple over the years for helping make TUH a great place to work, and a great place to receive treatment.”

125 Years and Counting: Providing Quality Patient Care

Temple University Hospital was founded on the principle that quality healthcare should be available to everyone. In its first year, the hospital provided care for 202 inpatients and 1,448 outpatients. Today, TUH includes 722 licensed beds, accommodates more than half a million inpatient and outpatient visits each year, and is a world leader in addressing healthcare disparities and society’s biggest public health challenges.

“For 125 years, TUH has been combining life-changing health care delivery with its proud tradition of community commitment,” said Larry R. Kaiser, MD, FACS, the Lewis Katz Dean at the School of Medicine, President and CEO of Temple University Health System, and Senior Executive Vice President for Health Affairs for Temple University. “Our commitment to providing some of the most sophisticated medical interventions in the world has attracted patients from the region and beyond for 125 years and counting.”

Temple University Hospital’s expert clinical teams bring state-of-the-art therapies and technologies to patients, providing options often unavailable at other hospitals. One example is a life-saving operation called pulmonary thromboendarterectomy (PTE) which offers new hope for patients with chronic blood clots in the lungs that result in heart failure. Temple University Hospital is one of only a handful of hospitals in the nation to offer this procedure.

The hospital complements its clinical excellence with an assortment of initiatives that in many ways advance the health and well-being of patients. For example, as part of its commitment to healthy mothers and babies, Temple University Hospital recently launched a ‘Baby Box’ program to promote sleep safety awareness. All moms who deliver their babies at TUH receive educational materials, clothing and other newborn must-haves, and a portable bassinet to discourage high-risk co-sleeping with infants while keeping them safely within an arm’s reach.

TUH has put tremendous efforts toward preventing and minimizing the effects of gun violence with programs such as “Cradle-to-Grave,” which offers school-age youth an eye-opening glimpse of its effects on young lives, and “Turning Point,” which connects actual victims of gun violence with counseling and support services to help them reclaim their lives.

125 Years and Counting: Serving the Philadelphia Community

TUH was established as Samaritan Hospital in 1892 by Temple University founder Russell Conwell. Since then, TUH has sustained – and expanded – its founding mission: to provide quality healthcare to people from all walks of life. From its humble beginnings with just two staff members and a single horse-drawn ambulance, TUH has become one of the busiest and most progressive hospitals in the region.

As the chief clinical education site of the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University, TUH supports 21 residency and 18 fellowship training programs involving more than 550 physicians. TUH features nationally recognized programs, such as lung disease and transplant.

“Temple University Hospital serves as a place of learning, a place of healing, and a place where our community can fully feel the support of Temple University,” said Richard M. Englert, EdD, President of Temple University. “Our steadfast commitment to teaching the next generations of medical researchers and physicians remains unchanged since TUH first opened its doors in 1892.”

Located in a federally-designated Medically Underserved Area, TUH is dedicated to serving one of the largest underserved and at-risk patient populations in the region. Temple University Hospital reaches individuals beyond its Broad Street home through its many outreach and community-building initiatives, providing free health screenings; support groups; flu shots in cooperation with the City Health Department; and education on diabetes care, mental health, burn prevention and more.

TUH, in collaboration with Temple University’s Center for Social Policy and Community Development and a network of community alliances and partnerships, has developed a program to train and certify Community Health Workers (CHWs) – peer coaches who work with local residents with chronic medical conditions to help coordinate their care and help them gain access to needed resources to keep them well and out of the hospital. Through this program, CHWs also build skills that enable them to play a vital role in a dynamic healthcare environment.

The hospital also invests approximately $22 million a year to support critical healthcare services needed in the community for outpatient emergency care, acute care, burn care and psychiatric services, as well as inpatient psychiatric services on the hospital’s Episcopal Campus.

“It is remarkable to consider all of the changes to our community and to the way we view healthcare that have taken place in the last 125 years, and TUH has been with Philadelphia through it all,” said Congressman Dwight Evans, who represents Pennsylvania’s second district. “Temple University Hospital is a vital partner and continues to provide next-level care that is recognized and appreciated across the region.”