Lahey Hospital & Medical Center Celebrates 100 Years of Extraordinary Care

April 03, 2023

Medical Center Marks Century of Advancing Medicine and Caring for the Community

Burlington, MA — Lahey Hospital & Medical Center, part of Beth Israel Lahey Health, is celebrating its 100th anniversary this month, marking a century of providing world-class, collaborative and compassionate care to the community and supporting groundbreaking advancements in medicine.

From its historic beginnings in 1923 with its founding by visionary Boston surgeon Frank Lahey, MD, to its place today as a leading tertiary academic medical center, Lahey Hospital & Medical Center continues to push the bounds of pioneering treatment, innovative technology and leading-edge research.

Lahey will celebrate the 100-year milestone by recognizing its rich tradition of multidisciplinary, patient-centered care; honoring its dedicated team of exceptional providers, nurses, staff and volunteers; and reaffirming the organization’s mission to furthering medical research to improve quality of life for all.

“Dr. Lahey’s unique vision 100 years ago to foster a collaborative approach to health care remains at the core of Lahey Hospital & Medical Center today,” said Susan Moffatt-Bruce, MD, PhD, president of Lahey Hospital & Medical Center. “That vision continues to guide us in providing our patients with access to the latest options in treatment, driven by the expertise of our specialized medical teams and supported by our research and education efforts.”

When Dr. Lahey founded his group practice in 1923, his goal was to create a clinic where every component of a patient’s health care would be coordinated under one roof – an approach seen as revolutionary at the time. He established the Lahey Clinic in Boston’s Kenmore Square with an anesthesiologist, an operating nurse, a surgical assistant and a gastroenterologist.

By the 1930s and 1940s, Lahey Clinic was regarded as a leader across the nation, in part due to its exceptionally high rate of surgical successes.

As Lahey Clinic grew, it introduced breakthrough technology. An X-ray machine was acquired in 1924, earlier than most hospitals. In 1958, a state-of-the-art heart-lung machine was developed, enabling surgeons to perform open-heart surgery. In 1975, a whole-body ACTA Scanner, a precursor to the modern CT machine, was installed.

Advanced treatments for thyroid, gastrointestinal and gallbladder disorders were developed as Lahey Clinic became a center for research and learning, with doctors-in-training benefiting from the expert guidance of some of the nation’s leading physicians.

Lahey surgeons performed the first laparoscopic colectomy in 1991 and the nation’s first combined live-donor liver and kidney transplants simultaneously in 1999. In 2005, Lahey’s Live Donor Adult Liver Transport Program became one of the nation’s first to be accredited.

Following two expansions in Boston, Lahey Clinic moved to its current location on Mall Road in Burlington in 1980 and became Lahey Clinic Medical Center. It was renamed Lahey Hospital & Medical Center in 2012.

In 1994, Lahey Medical Center was established in Peabody and expanded services in 2009 as Lahey Medical Center North Shore. The Sophia Gordon Cancer Center opened in 2007, with advanced treatments for cancer.

In 2019, Lahey Hospital & Medical Center became part of Beth Israel Lahey Health, a new health system that brings together academic medical centers and teaching hospitals, community and specialty hospitals, more than 4,800 physicians and 36,000 employees in a shared mission to expand access to great care and advance the science and practice of medicine through groundbreaking research and education.

Today, Lahey’s physician-led, nonprofit group practice has more than 500 physicians and 5,000 nurses, therapists and other providers dedicated to instilling a culture of caring and compassion that has been at the forefront for a century. Most recently, Lahey announced a new partnership with the UMass Chan School of Medicine to establish a regional campus in Burlington that will emphasize leadership, health systems science and interprofessional education, preparing students to lead and create solutions to future challenges in health care. The first cohort of medical students participating in the program will begin in August 2024.

“Lahey Hospital & Medical Center has transformed the face of health care in the region and earned its reputation as a leader in academic medicine,” said Jane C. Edmonds, chair of Lahey Hospital & Medical Center’s Board of Trustees. “We look forward to continuing to blaze new trails and furthering our tradition of excellence for the next centuries to come.”

Lahey Hospital & Medical Center is consistently recognized by national publications and rating agencies. It was ranked among America’s 50 Best Hospitals by Healthgrades in 2023.