California Pacific maintains a strong patient care and teaching tradition that dates back to the late 1800's. The four campuses of California Pacific represent some of oldest hospitals in San Francisco. California Pacific was created in 1991 by the merger of Children's Hospital and Pacific Presbyterian. The Davies Campus, formally Franklin Hospital, Davies Medical Center, was acquired in August 1998. St. Luke’s became the fourth campus in 2007.
A Tradition of Excellence
Dr. Elias Cooper organized the West's first medical school with a charter from the University of the Pacific in 1858. Upon Dr. Cooper's death in 1862, his nephew, Levi Cooper Lane, attempted to take over as leader; but the school floundered. In 1882, Dr. Lane and his colleagues launched Cooper Medical College with Dr Lane's own money, at Sacramento and Webster Streets in San Francisco. In 1908, Cooper Medical College becomes Stanford University School of Medicine. When the university moved to Palo Alto in 1959, many of its medical staff remained to establish what would become Pacific Presbyterian Medical Center, currently, California Pacific's Pacific Campus.
House staff at Stanford Hospital in San Francisco
(now part of the Pacific Campus), 1933
The California Campus, located in San Francisco's Presidio Heights district, was founded by two women physicians in 1875 as the Pacific Dispensary for Women and Children. At that time, women graduates of medical schools had difficulty in securing internships. Drs Brown and Bucknell were determined to better the situation. The Attending Staff, interns and residents at the Pacific Dispensary for Women and Children were all women. In 1887, the name changed to Children's Hospital.
Davies Campus history reached back to the early 1854 when the German General Benevolent Society was formed to provide health care, food and shelter for the city’s German immigrants. German Hospital accepts its first medical interns for training in 1916. The Davies Campus is the site for a number of medical firsts: the world's first extra-anatomical bypass graft in 1951; the nation's first successful microsurgery “toe-to-hand” transplant in 1972; and the world's first successful re-attachment of a human tongue in 1997.
St. Luke's begins its internship and residency training program for physicians in 1891.
Attending and Resident Physicians at St Luke's, 1938.
Learn more about the history of California Pacific, see our History Timeline.