Sacred Heart Medical Center turns 75!

Throughout the rest of this year, Sacred Heart Medical Center is marking a major milestone: 75 years of exceptional medicine and compassionate care for the community.

We already threw a birthday party, with cupcakes, for caregivers and community members at both the RiverBend and University District campuses in July.

Then we invited community members to help us celebrate by visiting our Exhibit Hall booth at the Lane County Fair (Aug. 17 through 21), where we showcased our ongoing, commemorative digital photo project, "I Got My Start at Sacred Heart." Dozens of Sacred Heart babies from the 1930s through 2011 visited our booth to have their photos taken for our by-the-decades albums, which you'll find on our Facebook page. Over the five days of the fair, we posted 776 pictures of people—some of them photos of entire families—who were born at Sacred Heart, as well as folks who have worked for us, gone to nursing school here or had some life-changing experience while in our care over the last 75 years.

We know there are many thousands more of you who got your start within our walls, and we're hoping we'll hear from you. Send us your photo, and your story if you wish, by following the directions on our Facebook page: And while you're there, look for your friends, neighbors and family members!

As we celebrate this proud anniversary, it’s important to take a look back to see how far we’ve come since 1936—the year the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace were asked to take over the financially struggling, 12-year-old Pacific Christian Hospital. Check out the timeline below, and join the 6,000 PeaceHealth caregivers in Lane County in wishing Sacred Heart a happy 75th birthday!

Sacred Heart Medical Center
Key Timeline of Events

1936 - The Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace purchase Pacific Christian Hospital for $50,000, renaming it Sacred Heart General Hospital. At the time, the hospital had 78 beds and 18 bassinettes.

1942- Sacred Heart establishes a School of Nursing. More than 600 nurses were trained in the program which continued until 1970, when this educational function was turned over to Lane Community College. 

1962- The Sacred Heart Medical Center Foundation was created to help meet the hospital’s financial needs.

1971- The first open-heart surgery in Oregon outside of Portland is performed by Drs. Bob Hodom and David German at Sacred Heart.

1972- A helipad is constructed on the top of the hospital to receive emergency patients arriving from outlying areas.

1977- The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is established, providing highly specialized services to premature infants.

1984- The Oregon Heart Center opens at Sacred Heart to consolidate all aspects of cardiac care. The name later changed in 2004 to Oregon Heart & Vascular Institute.

1987- Sacred Heart installs the first hospital based magnetic resonance imaging system (MRI) outside of Portland.

July 5, 2005 - Construction of Sacred Heart at RiverBend officially begins

August 10, 2008- Sacred Heart at RiverBend in Springfield opens to the public; Sacred Heart, University District continues to operate as a 104-bed hospital with a 24-hour emergency department in Eugene.

2009- Sacred Heart launched its robotic-assisted surgery program using the da Vinci Si Surgical System

2011- Sacred Heart Medical Center celebrates its 75th anniversary and plans for the renewal of its University District campus in Eugene. Between the two campues, the combined patient bed total is nearly 450.

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