Bozeman Deaconess
Bozeman Deaconess
> About Us > The Organization > Our History    

Our History

The year 2011 marked an important milestone for our nonprofit community hospital. Bozeman Deaconess Hospital celebrated a century of commitment, caring, and service. What began as a 20-bed hospital with one doctor is now an 86 bed facility with over 160 physicians on medical staff representing 45 specialties. Today Bozeman Deaconess Health Services is the largest private employer in Gallatin Valley with more than 1300 employees.
It never occurred to John Bozeman as he led settlers to the Gallatin Valley that he was making history. It also probably never occurred to Dr. Henry Foster when he built the Bozeman Sanitarium on the corner of Lamme and North Tracy that he, too, was making history. Centralized healthcare began in the Gallatin Valley with Dr. Foster's medical facility. After Dr. Foster died, his widow sold the Bozeman Sanitarium to Dr. J.F. Blair in 1902, and he renamed it the Blair Sanitarium. Dr. Blair initially leased his sanatorium to the Deaconesses and then offered to sell it for $20,000.
In 1911, your community non-profit hospital, Bozeman Deaconess, was born of a partnership between the community and the Methodist Church when each contributed $10,000 to purchase the Bozeman Sanitarium from Dr. Blair. Once the sale was complete, the Sanitarium was renamed Bozeman Deaconess Hospital and was managed by Methodist deaconesses.
A "deaconess" was a woman who dedicated her life to service. The deaconesses cared for patients, cleaned the hospital, and typically received a small stipend plus room and board.
By 1920, additional hospital facilities were needed, and in spite of pressing financial problems at the time, area citizens and the Methodist Church responded in support of a new hospital. The 50-bed hospital cost $125,000 to complete. The former sanatorium building was renovated to house the deaconess nurses. The population of Gallatin County at that time was 15,864. By the 1940s, the last of the deaconesses in Bozeman had moved or retired, closing the era of the deaconess. In 1944, a west wing was constructed to serve as the nurses' dormitory. A few years later, this building was converted to patient services, and the capacity of the hospital was increased to 104 beds (patients shared rooms and had longer hospital stays than is the norm today). In 1955, a full time radiologist was hired and a modern x-ray department opened.
In 1956, the governing board and management at Bozeman Deaconess recognized the growth that would come to the Bozeman area, and thus purchased 500 acres of land east of town. (During the 1960s Bozeman Deaconess built the Hillcrest Retirement Community on Highland Boulevard.) In 1957, the hospital opened a newly equipped physical therapy department; two years later, a modern laboratory was established. In 1961, Bozeman Deaconess celebrated its 50th anniversary.
In 1969, an intensive care unit was built, which attached to the original buildings built in 1920 and 1944. In 1971, a $1.7 million addition was completed on the hospital which was still located on the corner of Tracy and Lamme. The hospital purchased a radioactive isotope scanner in 1977.
By 1980 the population in Gallatin Valley had grown to 42,865. In 1983 the need was established for a modern acute care facility. In light of rapid changes in healthcare and area population projections, trustees formulated a long range development plan to relocate and construct a new facility west of Highland Boulevard and north of the Hillcrest Retirement Community on land it had purchased in 1956.
The 86-bed (all private rooms) hospital opened in 1986 in an area that offered, and continues to offer, ample space for future expansion of services. At that time there were 60 physicians on medical staff. The 'new' Bozeman Deaconess was built on 90 acres, leaving 400 acres free for future use or sale. Trustees recognized that the land would appreciate and offer the potential to lower health care costs in the future. In response to requests for office space by area physicians, attached medical office buildings were constructed. Highland Park 1 opened in early 1990. Also in 1990, the Cardiac Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program began and the Pharmacy at Highland Park opened. Highland Park 2 was fully occupied by July 1992. The Cancer Treatment Center (now Bozeman Deaconess Cancer Center) opened in 1994. Highland Park 3 opened in 1998 for medical office space and also houses the Cancer Center, the Dialysis Center and Outpatient Services. Bozeman Deaconess Foundation was incorporated in 1999.
Between 1996 and 2006 Gallatin County saw a 27% growth rate. Bozeman Deaconess responded to meet growing community need to improve community health and quality of life. A 10-bed emergency department opened in October 1999 and plans are underway to begin building a new 26-bed emergency department in 2011. In 2001, Hillcrest was rebuilt and Aspen Pointe (retirement living) and Birchwood (assisted living) opened. In 2003 the Cardiac Cath Lab opened, offering diagnostic catheterizations to 500 patients. Highland Park 4 is completed in 2005.
Bozeman Deaconess Health Group began in 2005 as a partnership to support continued access to essential and expanded services to the community. Robert A. Hathaway and Internal Medicine Associates are the first clinics to join the group. Today, there are nearly 50 employed physicians and more than 15 employed midlevel providers. A new surgery suite was constructed in 2005, and two new OR suites added, to meet the increased number of surgeries performed at Bozeman Deaconess Hospital. Advanced Medical Imaging opened. Bozeman Deaconess Cancer Center was renovated in 2006 to offer fully integrated cancer care. Also in 2006, Aspen Pointe added 32 new apartments. The Wound Clinic opened; the following year, a hyperbaric chamber was added. An interventional cardiologist joined the medical staff. Until that time, people having a heart attack had to go to Billings for lifesaving treatment.
Bozeman Deaconess Cancer Center was renovated in 2006 to offer fully integrated cancer care. Also in 2006, Aspen Pointe added 32 new apartments. The Wound Clinic opened; the following year, a hyperbaric chamber was added. An interventional cardiologist joined the medical staff. Until that time, people having a heart attack had to go to Billings for lifesaving treatment.
In 2007, Bozeman Deaconess Hospital began the Hospital Medicine program. Surgical Services expanded and a new Perioperative Services (formerly Day Surgery) wing was built. The Sleep Disorders Center expanded from three to six sleep rooms. Bozeman Deaconess Internal Medicine Associates moved into expanded space on the top floor of Highland Park 4. Big Sky Women's Specialists (now referred to as Bozeman Deaconess Women's Specialists) Neurology and Urological Associates joined Bozeman Deaconess Health Group. Bozeman Deaconess Diabetes Center opened. The new state of the art Laboratory, with fully automated instrumentation opened. And, Bozeman Deaconess was named Business of the Year by Prospera Business Network. That also was the year Bozeman Deaconess began planning a community-wide Electronic Health Records system.
In 2008-09 obstetric delivery rooms were renovated and remodeled and the nursery expanded. In 2009 a Vascular Lab, where radiologists and cardiologists offer minimally invasive procedures to treat vascular disease and blockage, opened. The Knolls Phase I opened for adults 55 and better. Synergy Medical Spa opened. Pulmonary Disease and Critical Care, Infectious Disease, Rheumatology and Family Medicine & Pediatrics (formerly Medical Associates) joined Bozeman Deaconess Health Group. Bozeman Deaconess received American Heart Association Training Center Designation and the Bozeman Deaconess Foundation celebrated a decade of philanthropy with $10 million raised for healthcare services in 10 years. The Greater Gallatin United Way presented its Community Impact Award to Bozeman Deaconess and the Health Information Center opened in Highland Park 2 Atrium.
Notable additions of new technologies, medical services and treatments in 2010 include Bozeman Deaconess Cancer Center accreditation by Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. Bozeman Deaconess Cancer Center also became a Seattle Cancer Care Alliance Network member. Bozeman Deaconess and 16 school districts formed a health literacy partnership. Bozeman Deaconess is designated Blue Distinction Center for Knee and Hip Replacement. HealthGrades awarded Bozeman Deaconess Five Star ratings for Coronary Interventional Procedures, Total Hip Replacements and Treatment of Bowel Obstruction. Cleverley + Associates awarded Bozeman Deaconess a Five Star Award for Community Value. Bozeman Deaconess launched a safety campaign based on aviation and nuclear industry error reduction practices. The hospital safety campaign earned VHA's Work Force Improvement Award for successful communication strategies. Bozeman Deaconess began offering telepharmacy services to Big Sky. Nephrology joined Bozeman Deaconess Health Group. And the Bozeman Deaconess Foundation launched the Cornerstone Campaign to raise funds for an expanded Emergency department.
The multispecialty Bozeman Deaconess Health Group expanded to include primary care (family medicine, internal medicine and pediatrics), cardiology, otolaryngology, obstetrics and gynecology, gastroenterology, nephrology, rheumatology, urology, travel medicine, infectious disease, neurology, geriatric medicine, palliative medicine, oncology, pulmonary medicine and critical care, cosmetic surgery, diabetes, hematology, medical oncology and sleep medicine.
Bozeman Deaconess continued to expand services and facilities in 2011-12, and garnered more prestigious awards for its efforts. With the successful completion of Bozeman Deaconess Foundation's $9 million Cornerstone Campaign, Phase I of the new Emergency Department opened, providing 19 state-of-the-art examination rooms for patient care. Phase II, opening in January 2013, includes a complete renovation of the current 10-bed ER into a new triage area with seven updated exam rooms.
Fresenius Medical Care purchased Bozeman Dialysis Center and expanded treatment option for out-patients and instituted in-patient dialysis at Bozeman Deaconess. Bozeman Deaconess Cancer Center was selected by the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) as a research affiliate to offer 75 new clinical cancer research trials locally, and by the Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) to participate in a national prostate cancer study. The Foundation launched a new $3 million campaign to purchase and build a new vault for a new linear accelerator (machine that delivers radiation treatment) for the Cancer Center, and expand chemotherapy.
Teaming up with Gallatin City-County Health Department and Community Health Partners for Immunize Montana, Bozeman Deaconess Health Services is helping raise vaccine rates among children and adults in the state. Some are getting their immunizations at the new Community Care Connect (CCC) bus that travels around three counties providing a number of health screens. Bozeman Deaconess Health Group added specialties in neuropsychology and physical medicine and rehabilitation. Four of its primary care clinics were the first in Montana to earn Level III Medical Home Recognition, the highest level from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA), which also gave three-year recognition to Bozeman Deaconess Diabetes Center.
Bozeman Deaconess Hospital won an Avatar International 2011 Exceeding Expectations Award, and in 2012, for the fifth year in a row, a Quality Achievement Award, the highest honor from Mountain Pacific Quality Health Foundation. The Leapfrog Group awarded an "A" Hospital Safety Score to Bozeman Deaconess Health Services, which also was named one of the nation's Top Performers on Key Quality Measures by The Joint Commission, the leading accreditor of health care organizations in America, for heart attack, pneumonia and surgical care. Finally, Bozeman Deaconess Health Services received five stars from HealthGrades® for joint replacement for the fourth year in a row, and was ranked in the top five in Montana for overall orthopedic services.
Today Gallatin County is home to more than 90,000 people who, along with visitors, seek and receive topnotch medical care at Bozeman Deaconess Hospital.
Bozeman Deaconess
| Site Map | Search | Contact Us | Privacy Practices | Patient's Rights | Terms & Conditions | For Medical Staff |