City Council proclamation marks Homestead Hospital’s 70 years

By Jose Boza….

Celebrating Homestead Hospital Day are (l-r) Bo Boulenger, CEO of Baptist Hospital of Miami and former CEO of Homestead Hospital; Bill Duquette, CEO of Homestead Hospital; Homestead Vice Mayor Judy Waldman; Wayne Brackin, Baptist Health chief operating officer and former CEO of Homestead Hospital, and Phillis Oeters, Baptist Health corporate vice president of government and community affairs

Homestead Hospital, one of the largest employers in South Miami-Dade County with nearly 1,200 employees, was recognized recently for the 70th anniversary of its namesake at a City of Homestead Council meeting. Homestead Mayor Steven C. Bateman proclaimed “Homestead Hospital Day” in honor of this occasion.

“It’s hard to believe that in 1940 a group of Homestead citizens hosted two potluck/fish fry events and raised almost $12,000 to develop a hospital in Homestead,” said Bill Duquette, CEO of Homestead Hospital. “With the money, they retrofitted a house on Krome Avenue into the first iteration of what eventually became this facility.

“Baptist Health South Florida is proud to continue the tradition of Homestead Hospital by providing a high quality facility that ranks among the top in patient satisfaction.”

Homestead Hospital opened on Aug. 9, 1940 at 160 NW 13 St. in Homestead under the leadership of pioneer physician James Archer Smith. It was built with community donations and U.S. Works Progress Administration funds on land just west of Krome Avenue donated by J.D. Redd.

Today, Baptist Health South Florida’s Homestead Hospital is a modern, full-service 142-bed facility located at Campbell Drive and SW 147th Avenue. The $135 million hospital opened in May 2007, replacing the original facility.

Homestead Hospital’s comprehensive healthcare services include acute inpatient care, critical care, outpatient diagnostics, 24-hour emergency, pediatrics, The Birthing Suites, inpatient and outpatient surgery, endoscopy and rehabilitation. Homestead Hospital’s medical staff is made up of more than 400 physicians who represent more than 30 specialties, ranging from cardiology and gastroenterology to neurology and urology.

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