Massachusetts General Hospital was established to provide care to Boston’s sick, regardless of socioeconomic status—an innovative idea in 1811. In the words of our founder, Dr. John Warren, “When in distress, every man becomes our neighbor.” We then became the first teaching hospital for Harvard University’s new medical school and have been redefining excellence in health care ever since.
Today we remain committed to that mission through our four pillars: we provide exceptional patient care, perform more medical research than any other hospital, educate tomorrow’s brightest medical minds and maintain a deep-seated commitment to the community.
Check out our #RevolutionizingCare series which highlights the ways our dedicated, talented staff are upholding our mission to care, investigate, educate and serve:
(Editor’s note: This summer, the Mass General Research Institute has two communications interns working with us as we work to highlight all of the research that takes place across Massachusetts General Hospital. Here is a post from our intern Milo Goodman.)
One major highlight of my first week as a Communications Intern was visiting the Massachusetts General Hospital Ether Dome and the Paul S. Russell, MD, Museum of Medical History and Innovation alongside Alyssa, the other summer Communications Intern here at the Research Institute.
Our aim was to familiarize ourselves with the rich history of medical innovation that has taken place at Mass General throughout its existence since its founding over 200 years ago.
We also planned on taking a few photographs for social media purposes to encourage members of the general public to come and see the sights for themselves.
When Proto Magazine: Dispatches From the Frontiers of Medicine launched its inaugural issue in 2005, researchers were anxiously watching a new flu virus called H5N1, which many were concerned might lead to a global pandemic. Although no global crisis came from the virus, that fear is very much alive. In this video, Dr. Martin Hirsch, a senior physician in the infectious disease service at Mass General, discusses the controversy that followed work on H5N1.
“On October 16, 1846, at Massachusetts General Hospital, [William T.G. Morton] successfully administered ether to a surgical patient in a public demonstration. As acclaim was heaped upon Morton, [Horace] Wells unsurprisingly cried foul—but so did [Charles T.] Jackson. A bitter dispute rose all the way to Congress…”
Did you know that Mass General has an official “writer-in-residence?” Primary care physician Suzanne Koven, MD, is first to hold the role in the hospital’s 200+ year history.
Koven, whose work frequently appears in the Boston Globe and other publications, has observed that medicine’s crucial element—the clinician-patient relationship—has become threatened as the profession becomes increasingly technology-driven. She and
other physicians believe that integrating creative arts such as writing, art and music with the practice of medicine can help reduce physician burnout, foster empathy and enhance patient-doctor communication.
**Koven will be appearing at the Paul S. Rusell, MD, Museum along with WBZ-TV medical reporter Mallika Marshall to talk about the dual challenges of practicing medicine and reporting on medicine. The event is part of the Women in Medicine series sponsored by the Mass General Research Institute.**
Here’s a blast from the past. An undated photo from one of the research labs at Massachusetts General Hospital. Mass General operates the largest hospital-based research program in the United States, and has been leading the way in medical innovation for more than 200 years.
Do you have a guess for when this photo was taken?