KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center celebrated its 100th anniversary on Wednesday. The hospital was chartered in 1919 and opened its doors in 1920.
The hospital was given a proclamation by Lt. Governor Randy McNally to mark the occasion.
Fort Sanders Regional introduced ambulance service and incubators for premature babies to Knoxville. It also was the first private hospital in the city to use penicillin.
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“I’m certain the physicians who founded Fort Sanders Hospital 100 years ago couldn’t possibly envision the magnitude of their accomplishments as they stand today,” Keith Altshuler, president and chief administrative officer of Fort Sanders Regional, said, “but as we reflect on an inspiring 100-year history, I am confident that we have many more accomplishments ahead in the next 100 years.”
In the past century, the hospital has admitted an estimated 750,000 patients, performed 400,000 surgeries and aided in 125,000 births. The number of visits to the hospital’s emergency department over the course of 100 years is more than a million.
The hospital has undergone several construction and expansion projects through the years. Fort Sanders Regional is undergoing a $115 million expansion that will nearly double the capacity of the hospital’s emergency department. It is expected to open in spring 2020.
The expansion will also add two floors to the hospital’s Center for Advanced Medicine for critical care services.
“This project is specifically designed to meet the needs of a growing downtown community, city and region that needs and deserves additional emergency care resources in light of downtown-area hospital closures over the past several years,” said Jim VanderSteeg, president and CEO of Covenant Health, the parent company of Fort Sanders Regional.