Yale University Health Services YUHS will mark its silver century anniversary with a symposium and celebration on the theme "25 Years of Caring for the Yale Community" on Friday, Dec. 6.
President Richard C. Levin will present the opening remarks at the symposium, which will be held 1-5 p.m. in the Luce Hall auditorium, 34 Hillhouse Ave.
Dr. David Rosenthal, director of Harvard University Health Services, will give the first presentation, titled "University Health Services: A Model for National Health Care." The focus will then shift to a more local level with a lecture titled "Academic Medicine at Yale: Preserving the Mission, Serving the Patient" by Dr. David Leffell, medical director of the Yale Faculty Practice at the School of Medicine, and associate professor of dermatology and surgery; and a panel discussion on "The Inpatient Care Facility: Showcase of YUHS Services." The symposium will conclude with a peek at future possibilities in a talk titled "An Electric Vision: The Shape of Health Care To Come" by Daniel Updegrove, director of Yale Information Technology Services.
A reception will follow the symposium 5-7 p.m. in the Presidents Room of Woolsey Hall, corner of College and Grove streets.
The campus community is invited to attend both the symposium and the reception. For further information, call 432- 0076.
In the beginning ...
Before 1971, the year YUHS was established, health services for the Yale community were provided by the Department of University Health. That department, in turn, had been organized in 1916 to promote the general health and physical fitness of the student population and to encourage habits of rational exercise and healthy living.
From the turn of the century through the mid-1960s, the Department of University Health steadily expanded its services. When it was originally housed at 90 High St., the facility was directed by Dr. James C. Greenway, whose staff included two full-time physicians, several part-time physicians and a clerk. Later, inpatient services were provided at the Yale Infirmary at 276 Prospect St. The infirmary originally had a complement of 12 beds, which was increased to 26.
In 1930, the Department of University Health moved its outpatient services into new quarters at 435 College St. Six years after the move, Dr. Greenway retired. He was succeeded by Dr. Orville F. Rogers, who served as director 1936-55, and who, in turn, was succeeded by Dr. John S. Hathaway, a longtime Yale staff member, who held the directorship until 1971.
During its 55-year history, the Department of University Health passed several milestones. When the United States entered World War I in April of 1917, the entire work of the department focused on examining candidates for Reserve Officers Training Corps. Later, the department's staff entered the Medical Corps.
Another milestone was the creation of the division of mental hygiene in 1925, which was headed by Dr. Clements Fry from 1930- 1955.
Birth of a new health service
Recognizing that the forms and methods of health service had changed radically and that the College Street building was inadequate in size and design, the University established a special committee on program planning in 1965. This committee -- headed by then-Provost Charles Taylor -- was asked to submit specific recommendations on how to redefine Yale's health care policy and program to the Board of University Health. That committee proposed a program to establish a coordinated University Health Services that would be open to all students, employees and their dependents and that would offer comprehensive medical care by a group practice team within a specifically designed health service center.
On July 1, 1971, YUHS opened in its current site, within the University Health Services Center at 17 Hillhouse Ave. Dr. Daniel S. Rowe was named medical director of the new facility, and Joseph Axelrod was appointed as administrator of YUHS. Dr. Rowe was succeeded in 1990 by Dr. Stephanie Spangler, who accepted the position of Deputy Provost for Biomedical and Health Affairs at the University in 1995. Dr. Lorraine D. Siggins, chief psychiatrist in the YUHS division of mental hygiene, has served since then as acting director of the Yale Health Plan and will continue in that post through the end of the calendar year.
Today YUHS offers a wide variety of health care services to the Yale community. In addition to such departments as internal medicine, pediatrics, mental hygiene, and obstetrics and gynecology, YUHS maintains a pharmacy, a laboratory, a radiology unit, a physical therapy facility, an inpatient care facility and an urgent care department, as well as many specialty care clinics -- such as allergy, dermatology, orthopedics, etc. In addition, YUHS offers an AIDS Resource and Counseling Center, the Center for Health Education and Preventive Medicine, and services for athletic medicine, contact lenses, employee health and travel.. Physicians at YUHS log approximately 142,500 patient visits per year, and have overseen the delivery of 5,500 babies.
YUHS also includes the Yale Health Plan, which coordinates the medical services described above, as well as emergency treatment, off-site specialty services, inpatient hospital care and other ancillary services. The plan now boasts 25,800 members.