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4 of the world's most iconic hospitals

Friday, August 26th, 2016 | Blog

There’s a lot of history in healthcare, from the advancement of medicine to the understanding of how the human body works. As these new advancements in technology developed though, so did the buildings that gave patients access to them. In many ways, it is thanks to these buildings that these new techniques were made a success. So let’s take a look at some of the most iconic buildings throughout the history of medicine and healthcare.


Henry Phipps Psychiatric Clinic, America

Henry Phipps Psychiatric Clinic, America

The Henry Phipps Psychiatric Clinic was the first healthcare institute opened specifically for psychiatric care and research. Henry Phipps, a wealthy business man, was already investing in the research of TB, but wanted to put money towards another cause. In 1908, Phipps was handed a book called A Mind That Found Itself, about the mistreatment of the mentally ill. His education from reading this book led him to donating $1.5m to fund The Henry Phipps Psychiatric Clinic; a move that brought in fairer treatment of the mentally ill when the clinic opened in Baltimore, Maryland on 16th April 1913.

St Thomas’ Hospital, England

St Thomas' Hospital, England


St Thomas’ Hospital is one of London’s most famous hospitals; first established in the 12th Century in Southwark. The current building, fully opened in 1896, sits opposite the House of Commons, alongside the River Thames. Despite its age, what makes St Thomas’ Hospital so special is that it was one of the first modern hospitals to incorporate the Pavilion Principle, a method of building planning popularised by Florence Nightingale. The principle involves planning hospital buildings in a way that separates people that are contagious from those who are not, whilst still providing ample air flow throughout the building. This way of building hospitals radicalised healthcare as it severely reduced the number of deaths.


Great Ormond Street Hospital, England

Great Ormond Street Hospital, England


Opening in 1852, Great Ormond Street Hospital was the first hospital in the United Kingdom to specialise in child care. There was no other hospital at the time dedicated to providing care to children that desperately needed it, today the hospital is well known in popular culture, with Channel 4’s annual Comedy Gala donating all of its proceedings to the hospital. Up until 2007 the hospital owned the copyright to Peter Pan, which over the years, brought in a considerable amount of money via loyalty payments.


Groote Schuur Hospital, South Africa

Groot Schuur Hospital, South Africa


Groote Schuur Hospital is located in Cape Town, South Africa and was opened in 1938. It is known as one of the best hospitals in the world, with many people going there to study. Alongside exceptional healthcare training, the hospital is most famous for the first ever human heart transplant performed by Christiaan Barnard. Considering it was 1967, this type of procedure was likely seen as some kind science-fiction like technology at the time. It is named Groote Schuur after 17th Century Dutch settlers, and it translate to English as ‘Great Barn’.


This is just a few of the many iconic and world changing healthcare settings around the world. But with medical technology continuing to develop at an alarming rate, we’re sure many more will earn their own prestigious rights in the years to come.


Do you know of any that should have made the list? Share them with us in the comments below or on our Facebook page.








Henry Phipps Psychiatric Clinic

St Thomas' Hospital

Great Ormond Street Hospital

Groote Schuur Hospital


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