PITTSBURGH – Founded in 1866 in downtown Pittsburgh as a homeopathic medical and surgical hospital and dispensary, the pioneering medical establishment moved to Shadyside in 1910. Homeopathy fell out of favor as traditional medicine progressed and the hospital was renamed Shadyside Hospital on May 12, 1938.
Homeopathy was founded in the late 1700s in Germany and gained popularity, especially for the treatment of common ailments, around the turn of the 19th century. The philosophy of homeopathic medicine is based on the idea that “like remedies likeAnd practitioners typically attempt to dose patients in an attempt to induce the body to regain its own health. The use of homeopathy was often preferred in an era when medical interventions could be haphazard or downright dangerous.
Three members of the Allegheny County Homeopathic Medical Society opened the Town Center Homeopathic Hospital in 1866. The hospital provided medical, surgical, obstetric and outpatient services. In 1868, Dr James Henderson McClelland joined the staff and played a vital role in the expansion of the hospital until his death in 1913.
The hospital was a medical leader in the region, establishing the first nursing school between Chicago and the East Coast in 1884. The UPMC Shadyside School of Nursing continues to provide flexible study programs for nursing students ranging from 16 to 32 months in length.
In 1896, the hospital was the first in western Pennsylvania to use x-rays and was also among the first to use surgical antiseptic techniques developed by Joseph Lister, which reduced post-surgical infection death rates from about 80% to almost zero.
As downtown Pittsburgh expanded and its population grew, the hospital moved to Shadyside, beginning construction of a new building in 1907. The New Homeopathic Hospital opened to patients on March 1, 1910.
Scientific advances in medical care have taken homeopathy out of favor with the public and the federal government Food Drugs and Cosmetics Act in 1938 leads to more regulation, classifying homeopathic medicines as medicines.
The Board of Directors renamed the Shadyside Hospital May 12, 1938.
In the decades that followed, Shadyside Hospital became known for its cardiology department and heart surgery. This opened Pittsburgh’s First Coronary Care Unit.
Two large wings were built to the north (1926) and south (1955) of the main building. The north wing and the south wing are still in use, but the main building and its entrance to the hospital were demolished in 1972. The current building is located just behind where it stood.
Shadyside Hospital opened the Family Health Center in 1973 to be a place for patients who did not have a primary care physician.
Shadyside Hospital became part of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in 1997. President and CEO of UPMC Jeffrey A. Romoff said he considered the large, well-run Shadyside Hospital to be “the white shoe hospital in town, at its peak. “
UPMC Shadyside Hospital is today a 520 bed hospital with a wide range of specialties and has since revisited some of its homeopathic roots. the Integrative Medicine Center became the first hospital in Pittsburgh to combine natural and holistic therapies as a service intended to complement conventional medicine.
the UPMC Hillman Cancer Center opened its flagship campus adjacent to UPMC Shadyside in 2002.