Saturday, February 11th. Among his very many achievements, Benjamin Franklin (pictured) played a leading role in the founding of America’s first hospital, decades before the Declaration of Independence. Together with Dr. Thomas Bond, he obtained a charter for a hospital to serve the poor, sick and insane in Philadelphia. The Pennsylvania Hospital opened on this date in 1752 in a converted house. The hospital later developed at a location where a modern medical complex still serves the city. During its long history, the hospital’s doctors have made advances in many fields, becoming known as “the father” of both American psychiatry and of surgery. Today, there are nearly 7,100 hospitals in the U.S., employing around 5.8 million people in the $878 billion per year business of healing. You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau online at www.census.gov.
Sources: Kane’s Famous First Facts, 4868
Hospitals and employment/NAICS 622: http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/BP/2014/00A1//naics~622
Hospital revenue/NAICS 622: http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ECN/2012_US/00A1//naics~622
Profile America is produced by the Center for New Media and Promotion of the U.S. Census Bureau. Statistics and accounts drawn from cited non-Census sources are employed for illustrative or narrative purposes, and are not attested to by the U.S. Census Bureau. These daily features are available as produced segments, ready to air, on the Internet at http://www.census.gov (look for “Audio” in the “Library” pull-down menu).