Among his many achievements, Benjamin Franklin played a leading role in the founding of America’s first hospital. 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 February 11, 1752 in a converted house. Its first special building was finished four years later 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 also of surgery. Today, there are almost 5,800 hospitals in the U.S., and 540,000 Americans are in these facilities on an average day.
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