September 12, 2019

Stanford Hospital’s new, transformational healing environment

I’m excited about the new Stanford Hospital, which will host an open house for the community this weekend and begin serving patients this fall.

If you have a chance to visit, you’ll be able to take a tour and see why this stunning structure is the latest expression of Stanford’s mission of service to others.

Stanford students founded a hospital after a typhoid outbreak occurred in 1903. The Palo Alto Stanford Hospital Center was built at that location in 1959, and it became Stanford University Hospital in 1968.

But its legacy goes back to our founding in 1885.

Jane and Leland Stanford lost their only child, Leland Junior, when he fell ill and died at age 15. In the depths of their grief, they chose to honor their son through our university, which was built in his name.

They were determined that it would exist to serve others. They began with a commitment, in the words of our founding grant, “to promote the public welfare by exercising an influence in behalf of humanity and civilization.”

 Today, we see that principle writ large in Stanford Hospital. It is the latest bold example of our efforts to make good on that commitment to serve others – by providing therapies, cures and disease prevention that will help people lead healthy lives.

The hospital reflects our work to bridge the humanities and sciences in new ways, accelerating the application of knowledge to problems in the world, and strengthening community, on and off campus. It advances Stanford’s Precision Health vision, a more proactive and personalized approach that focuses on predicting and preventing disease before it strikes and diagnosing and curing it decisively if it does.

Our physicians and other health care providers are caring and smart. They bring different ideas, backgrounds, and areas of expertise, and they work together to provide a healing environment that is tailored to each patient’s needs.

While they will serve people from around the world, I find it especially meaningful that we will be serving our neighbors in the Bay Area. More than two-thirds of our patients live in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties.

Through the years, nothing has demonstrated our support for our neighbors in a more visible or consequential way than Stanford Hospital.

We’re proud they will continue to be able to count on us for innovative, world-class medical care during some of the most important moments of their lives.

Their children are born here. They have access to breakthroughs in treating cancer, heart disease and brain disorders. They receive care from some of the world’s most skilled, dedicated providers.

Each year, the hospital serves nearly 27,000 inpatients and the emergency room treats more than 76,000 people. It has the only Level-1 trauma center between San Francisco and San Jose.

To meet the diverse language needs of our community, it offers translators and interpreters in Spanish, Mandarin, Cantonese, Burmese, Vietnamese and American Sign Language. In addition, as many as 200 languages are available through phone interpretation.

Construction is coming to a close but, in reality, the most meaningful work is just getting started.

Our loved ones, our community, our neighbors, and many others from across California – and far away – will have access to a new healing environment that will transform the patient experience and help improve lives.

For generations, Stanford has made every effort to ensure that these patients have the best experience possible.

Now and for generations to come, this new hospital will enable Stanford to continue shaping and improving care, often in ways never before thought possible.