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Rose Medical Center Celebrates 70th Anniversary

The hospital is celebrating it's history with events and stories this fall


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Planning for the Rose Medical Center in the 1940s. 

This year, Rose Medical Center is celebrating its rich history and deep community ties in honor of its 70th anniversary. To herald the anniversary, the central Denver hospital is commemorating its deep history of and commitment to inclusivity and excellence. It will also host anniversary celebrations this fall.

More than 70 years ago, on the heels of World War II, a group of Jewish physicians in Denver recognized an urgent need for additional hospital beds. Denver’s population was soaring, and the hospitals couldn’t keep up with community need. In addition, young Jewish physicians were returning from the war without a place to practice medicine. The Jewish Physicians’ Committee believed a new Denver hospital could solve both concerns. A unique community fundraising campaign was born and, in 1949, the General Maurice Rose Memorial Hospital was opened.

The hospital was named for fallen WWII hero and Denver son, General Maurice Rose. Rose was the highest-ranking Jewish officer in the U.S. Army. He was known for, and remembered to this day, for leading his troops front the front instead of a read command post. Continuing in its namesake’s tradition, General Maurice Rose Memorial Hospital (later Rose Medical Center) earned the distinction of being America’s first post-war, privately-sponsored hospital, and later became the first hospital in Denver to admit physicians based solely on their professional credentials regardless of race or religion. With a foundational value “to serve the need of every creed,” these marked just the beginning of many milestones from Rose Medical Center.

In honor of these milestones, Rose has launched a new campaign: “The Power of Doing Right," which highlights the hospital providing a place to practice to Jewish physicians returning from war service; it being the first hospital to credential a black doctor in Denver, general practitioner and surgeon, Dr. Edmond Noel, in 1949; its trailblazing of the shared governance model (giving nurses a voice in patient care decisions); and highlighting Rose’s commitment to respect and serve the diverse audiences of its patient base, employees, physicians and visitors.

“Rose is incredibly proud of our legacy of inclusivity and doing the right thing for our patients, physicians and the community,” says Ryan Tobin, president and CEO of Rose Medical Center. “We are proud of our heritage and the pioneering efforts of our predecessors that led to many innovations and important changes in healthcare. The team today continues to embrace this tradition and is honored to continue this trend into the future.”

The debut of The Power of Doing Right campaign kicks off the hospital’s 70th anniversary celebration. The commemoration will include events for staff to learn more about the hospital’s history; renovation and placement of an original portrait of General Rose in the hospital’s first floor museum; adding additional historical elements to the Rose museum, including the birth of the Rose Community Foundation, which came in 1995; digital media; a storytelling platform; and event sponsorships. The unveiling of General Rose’s portrait will be supported by General Rose’s own division, the 3D Armored Division Veterans of the U.S. Army.

“Those who came before us were unwavering in their dedication to inclusivity and excellence. This has brought the hospital much success, earning the distinction of ‘Denver's Baby Hospital’ and reputation as a leader in women’s, heart, cancer, orthopedic and bariatric care,” says Don Kortz, HealthONE board member and former Rose Medical Center advisory board president. “The leaders of Rose today have a responsibility to carry this trend onward. Highlighting and celebrating these historical milestones is an important step in shouldering that duty.”   

About Rose Medical Center

Well known as a Denver institution and a 9th Avenue landmark since its founding in 1949, Rose Medical Center has earned a reputation as “Denver's Baby Hospital" while becoming a leader in comprehensive women's care, orthopedics and total joint replacement, heart and vascular care, weight-loss treatment, cancer care, surgical services, internal medicine and emergency care. Rose Medical Center is proud to be a part of the HealthONE system of hospitals. With origins in Jewish teachings, traditions and community, Rose’s founders built this hospital “to serve the need of every creed.” 

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