Hospital of Saint Raphael

The Hospital of Saint Raphael or Saint Raphael Hospital, located in New Haven, Connecticut, United States, was a 511-bed community teaching hospital founded by the Sisters of Charity of Saint Elizabeth in 1907. On September 12, 2012, Yale-New Haven Hospital acquired the assets of the Hospital of Saint Raphael, making it a single 1,541-bed hospital with two main campuses, and establishing Saint Raphael's as Yale-New Haven Hospital Saint Raphael Campus.[1]

Saint Raphael Campus of Yale New Haven Hospital
Yale–New Haven Hospital
Location1450 Chapel St, New Haven, Connecticut, United States
Coordinates41°18′37″N 72°56′34″W / 41.31016°N 72.94285°W / 41.31016; -72.94285Coordinates: 41°18′37″N 72°56′34″W / 41.31016°N 72.94285°W / 41.31016; -72.94285
Hospital typeGeneral
Beds511 (licensed)
Founded1911; 109 years ago (1911)
ListsHospitals in Connecticut


In 1907, the Sisters of Charity of Saint Elizabeth came to New Haven to start the hospital at the request of a group of local physicians, led by Dr. William F. Verdi.[2] The doctors asked the Sisters of Charity to administer a hospital that would "receive and care for all patients who might apply for admission without regard to creed or race: To extend charity to the sick poor and to offer the institution to those of the medical profession who desire to care for their own patients".[3]

The name "Saint Raphael" was chosen for special reasons. Saint Raphael is not just a saint of the Catholic Church, but is one of the archangels recognized by many faiths. Translated from the Hebrew, Raphael means "God heals".[2] The archangel Raphael is revered as a patron of the sick and healing.

A 12-bed hospital was opened at 1442 Chapel Street in the Barnes Residence in 1907. The Barnes Residence was located next to Grace Hospital, a private homeopathic institute. Almost immediately plans were developed to add more capacity and the Saint Mary Pavilion was built and opened in 1910. It was built next to the original building and had 135 beds. Saint Raphael opened a School of Nursing and forms its auxiliary. In 1910, about one-third of New Haven's 40,000 foreign-born residents were Italian immigrants, many of whom lived in the Oak Street neighborhood near St. Raphael's. Typhoid fever, tuberculosis, and pneumonia were recorded as the leading causes of death.[4]

In the 1910s, patient care became more sophisticated. Saint Raphael got its first X-ray machine, opened its first pharmacy, and acquired its first motorized ambulance. The flu epidemic of 1918 created a need for more beds, and the hospital expanded to include the new St. Rita's wing. It also opened a modern laboratory, and welcomed its first full-time anesthesiologist. In 1927, Saint Vincent's Pavilion, an isolation pavilion for children with infectious diseases, became the center of the hospital's pediatric services. A former nurses' dormitory, it was located on George Street.[5]

Sister Louise Anthony Geronemo arrived in 1935 as a novice Sister of Charity to train at the School of Nursing. She went on to serve Saint Raphael in a variety of roles over the next 62 years, including 22 years as hospital administrator.

In 1940, the hospital broke ground on a $1,250,000 addition. With a six-story unit facing Chapel Street and five stories on Sherman Avenue, the bed capacity rose to 430. Saint Raphael opened a School of Medical Technology, one of the first in the nation. It established formal orthopedics, anesthesia, and outpatient departments. This was a training site for World War II U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps.

In the 1950s Saint Raphael established its leadership role in both cancer and cardiac care by opening southern New England's first radiation therapy center and being one of the first community hospitals in New England to perform open-heart surgery.

In the 1960s Saint Raphael continued its pioneering role in cardiac care, opening one of the first cardiac catheterization labs and cardiac care units in the state. It was the first Catholic hospital in the US to establish a recognized pastoral care department.

In the 1970s a longstanding relationship with Yale School of Medicine is formalized, enhancing Saint Raphael's role as a community teaching hospital. 1976 saw the opening of the Verdi Memorial Building which expanded and improved its surgical, emergency, and intensive care services.

In the 1980s Saint Raphael Healthcare System forms and acquires Saint Regis Health Center, a 125-bed skilled nursing facility, which is the only Catholic nursing home in New Haven. Saint Raphael opened the first outpatient chemotherapy/transfusion unit in Connecticut.

In the 1990s the Father Michael J. McGivney Center for Cancer Care opened. The system grew and affiliated with home-care providers Regional Visiting Nurse Agency and Shoreline VNA. It was the two-time winner of the national award of "Top 100 Hospitals" for overall services in independent, bench-marked studies by HCIA, Inc.

In 2012, with the acquisition of its assets by Yale-New Haven Hospital, the Hospital of Saint Raphael became Yale-New Haven Hospital Saint Raphael Campus. It is now part of a single 1,519-bed hospital with two main campuses.[6]


  1. ^ "Merger of Yale-New Haven Hospital, Saint Raphael's signed; DeStefano lauds nuns for decades of aid". New Haven Register. Retrieved 12 September 2012.
  2. ^ a b "The Hospital of Saint Raphael", Yale New Haven Health
  3. ^ "The Founding of the Hospital of Saint Raphael", Cushing/Whitney Medical Library, May 2000
  4. ^ "First Annual Report of the Hospital of Saint Raphael, 1910", Cushing/Whitney Medical Library, May 2000
  5. ^ "Saint Vincent Pavilion", Cushing/Whitney Medical Library, May 2000
  6. ^ "Hospital of Saint Raphael becomes a new campus of Yale-New Haven Hospital". Yale Medical Magazine.

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