Celebrating 100 Years of Care
During this anniversary year of celebration and change, we want to thank our patients, employees, physicians, volunteers, corporators, donors, businesses, legislators, and community partners, and let them know how much we appreciate their generous and longstanding support. As we look back over the last 100 years, one important point is clear to us. We realize that our history and legacy is not about dates, or places or machines, but about people – the people we serve and our people who serve them. Together, we form our unique story and heritage. And it is to all of you, both past and present, that we are forever grateful.
Enjoy our slideshow below of just some of the hospitals vintage photos…
The year 2016 will be a very special year for Charlotte Hungerford Hospital – our 100th anniversary serving the healthcare needs of northwest Connecticut. After a century, Torrington’s native son and philanthropist Uri Hungerford’s gift of a humble “hospital on the hill” continues to provide personal care and comfort with the same dedication and commitment as his mother, Charlotte, gave to others all those years ago.
It was a mild day on October 12, 1916, when our small three story building opened its doors for the first time on Four Story Hill, a former 120-acre farm. The landscape architectural firm of Frederick Law Olmsted designed its grounds and driveways, fulfilling the wishes of those who wanted to give the hospital the feel of a wonderful and welcoming home. By 1930, with the help of a generous bequest from our founder, Uri, a new state-of-the-art seven story tower was dedicated to accommodate the changing needs and technologies of a rapidly modernizing healthcare field. This continued in the late 1950s and throughout the end of the 20th century, when the hospital once again saw tremendous growth and diversity in the healthcare services and technologies it offered.
Today, the hospital is the region’s largest employer, fortunate to have the talents, expertise, and dedication of over 1,200 employees, physicians, and volunteers. Together with our community partners and business community, we are proud to be a part of the diverse cultural landscape that makes our region a great place to live and work. It’s been a long wonderful journey with many new milestones yet to come. As our next century of caregiving begins, 2016 will also be an important transitional year in our history. We face a much different and more complicated healthcare environment today than the early 1900s. For 10 decades, the hospital has remained strong – rising to meet the challenges of world wars, economic downturns, and natural disasters. Our only constant, as they say, has been change. But we know that moving forward means we must continuously reinvent ourselves and take all the necessary steps to ensure we remain a strong, quality healthcare provider well positioned to invest in and provide the very best technology and care.
With this in mind, we began a process in 2014 to evaluate the possible need for a strategic affiliation with a larger health system. Our goal was to consider ways to strengthen our operational, financial and clinical enterprise over the long-term, while remaining true to our mission of providing safe, affordable healthcare to the people of our community. Through this process, we have learned that entering a strategic partnership with a larger healthcare system has the potential to expand specialized services, provide access to new technology, help recruit skilled providers, build purchasing power, enhance clinical expertise, boost financial resources, and recognize cost saving benefits.
At present, we continue to explore the ways in which a partnership could bring these advantages to our community. As with any decision of this magnitude, the Board of Governors is conducting a careful evaluation of our options and opportunities. We will keep our patients and supporters well informed of our progress, and look forward to sharing our exciting new steps as 2016 unfolds.