Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

For hospitals with a similar name, see Deaconess Hospital (disambiguation).
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Caregroup Healthcare System
Location Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Care system Private
Hospital type Teaching
Affiliated university Harvard Medical School
Emergency department Level I trauma center
Helipad Yes
Beds 631
Founded Deaconess – 1896, Beth Israel – 1916; Merged 1996
Lists Hospitals in Massachusetts

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) in Boston, Massachusetts is a teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School. It was formed out of the 1996 merger of Beth Israel Hospital (founded in 1916) and New England Deaconess Hospital (founded in 1896). Among independent teaching hospitals, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center consistently ranks in the top three recipients of biomedical research funding from the National Institutes of Health.[1] Research funding totals nearly $200 million annually.[2] BIDMC researchers run more than 850 active sponsored projects and 200 clinical trials.[2] The Harvard-Thorndike General Clinical Research Center, the oldest clinical research laboratory in the United States, has been located on this site since 1973.[3]


Located in the Longwood Medical and Academic Area, BIDMC has consistently been ranked as one of the best hospitals in the US by U.S. News & World Report.[4] It is one of the largest hospitals in New England, is affiliated with Joslin Diabetes Center and is a research partner of Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center, the largest cancer institution in the country. The hospital is part of the Boston MedFlight consortium and supports a Level I trauma center through the use of its rooftop helipad.[1]

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center has affiliates in the Boston-areas towns of Needham, Milton, Plymouth, Chelsea and Lexington, as well as through numerous primary care practices and community health centers.

BIDMC is the official hospital of the Boston Red Sox[5] and under the 30+ year leadership of Mitchell T. Rabkin, M.D., was the first hospital in the nation to create and adopt a Patient Bill of Rights.[6]

The President and CEO of BIDMC is Kevin Tabb, M.D., who assumed the role in October 2011. Tabb came to BIDMC from Stanford Hospital & Clinics in Stanford, CA where he was the Chief Medical Officer (CMO).


New England Deaconess Hospital was founded In 1896 by Methodist Deaconesses to care for Boston's residents.[7] The Methodist Deaconess movement, which started in Germany in 1836, was a group of women dedicating themselves to the care of the sick and the poor. The first 14-bed infirmary was opened in a converted five-story brownstone at 691 Massachusetts Avenue. Although the hospital was originally staffed by the Deaconesses, in 1922 it added a permanent medical and surgical staff. In 1927, the New England Deaconess Association opened the Palmer Memorial Hospital, a cancer treatment facility. During the 1960s, Deaconess' residency programs gained accreditation and it affiliated with Harvard Medical School. Deaconess had a leading role in the early studies of the cause, course and treatment of AIDS. Deaconess was also a pioneer in organ transplantation and immunological research.

During an era of religious separatism and anti-Semitism, Boston's Jewish community founded Beth Israel Hospital in 1916 to meet the needs of the growing Jewish immigrant population.[7] Its first hospital on Townsend Street in Roxbury held 45-beds. The new hospital addressed the needs of immigrants who spoke Yiddish without speaking English and for patients who kept a kosher diet. In 1928, Beth Israel established relationships with Tufts University and the Harvard Medical School and relocated to a new facility in the Longwood area of Boston. During the Depression, Beth Israel was one of only two hospitals in Boston that treated welfare recipients. Researchers at Beth Israel discovered vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in 1983.

The two neighboring hospitals merged in 1996, continuing the patient care, educational and research components of both predecessors.[2] In 2003, BIDMC researchers identified the source of preeclampsia, a life-threatening complication of pregnancy.

In January 2014, Jordan Hospital joined the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center family of hospitals and became Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital-Plymouth. It was founded in 1899 when a group of leading citizens from Plymouth saw a need to build a hospital to serve residents and pursued the idea of "a hospital on the hill". They approached retail tycoon, philanthropist, and summer resident Eben Jordan of the Jordan Marsh & Company who donated $20,000 to build was to become Jordan Hospital. In December 1903, Jordan Hospital opened its doors to the first patients and has remained a community hospital ever since. It remains a private, not-for-profit hospital serving the communities of Bourne, Carver, Duxbury, Halifax, Kingston, Lakeville, Pembroke, Plympton, Plymouth, Marshfield, Middleboro, Sandwich and Wareham.[8]


Since the merger, the hospital has consisted of two campuses, the East (former Beth Israel) and the West (former Deaconess). The East Campus retained most primary care, outpatient, clinical and administrative functions, while the emergency department, inpatient care, the department of human resources, and many specialists are located on the West Campus. The medical center has more than 6,000 full-time employees.

The merger coincided with the completion of the ten-story Clinical Center, located at the corner of Brookline and Longwood Avenues, in space formerly occupied by the Massachusetts College of Art. The Clinical Center houses most of the hospital's outpatient services. The East Campus is located at 330 Brookline Avenue in the Longwood Medical Area.

The nation's oldest clinical research laboratory, the Harvard–Thorndike Laboratory, has been at this site since 1973.

The West Campus is nearly diagonally across the street, at 1 Deaconess Road. A number of other non-clinical, administrative offices (e.g. payroll, accounts payable, telecommunications) are located offsite in offices scattered throughout the area.

Major affiliates

Notable faculty and alumni


  1. 1 2 Stats and Facts - Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
  2. 1 2 3 "Merger - Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center". Retrieved 2012-07-06.
  3. "Stats and Facts - Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center". Retrieved 2012-07-06.
  4. "Awards and Honors - Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center". Retrieved 2012-07-06.
  5. "Red Sox & BIDMC - Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center". Retrieved 2012-07-06.
  6. 1 2 "How it All Began - Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center". Retrieved 2012-07-06.
  7. Beth Israel Hospital Plymouth web site, 2014, "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-09-28. Retrieved 2014-07-01.
  8. "American College of Surgeons: Trauma Programs: Consultations/Verification Programs: Verified Trauma Centers". Retrieved 2012-07-06.
  9. "Critical Care Transport Service". Boston MedFlight. Retrieved 2012-07-06.
  10. "About Our Affiliation - Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center". Retrieved 2012-07-06.
  11. "Paul Maurice Zoll: Faculty of Medicine - Memorial Minute". Harvard Gazette. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
  12. "Roderick MacKinnon, M.D.". The Rockefeller University. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
  13. "Dr. Jerome Groopman, 'Anatomy of Hope'". NPR. February 3, 2004. Retrieved 6 July 2012.
  14. "Dr. Jerome Groopman". Jerome Groopman. Retrieved 6 July 2012.

External links

Coordinates: 42°20′12″N 71°06′34″W / 42.3366°N 71.1094°W / 42.3366; -71.1094

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