In 1924, the founding fathers of the city of Graham and the local physicians realized the importance of having a modern hospital in their city. This hospital was a benevolent foundation to be turned over to the city of Graham after 25 years. M.K. Graham not only donated the land to build the hospital, but offered $20,000 if the citizens would match this amount. Within three days of the challenge, 75 percent of the money had been raised and thus Graham General Hospital was begun and remained on Cherry Street until 1957.
In September 15, 1954 the City of Graham formally took control of Graham General Hospital. The need for a more modern facility was realized and plans to build a new facility were put in place. In 1956, under the Hill-Burton Act, Graham General Hospital was constructed on its current location and was officially opened in 1957. Since that time, expansions and improvements to this hospital have been made through the generosity and support of this community: The Davidson Challenge Fund Drive, the Challenge Fund II Drive and most recently the Graham Benevolent Fund and The Bertha Foundation challenge grant in 1997. With this type of community support, Graham General Hospital has grown from a single structure in 1925 to Graham Regional Medical Center, a campus of expanded services and state-of-the-art equipment in 1999. Graham Regional Medical Center is a hospital owned by the City of Graham and operates without any subsidized tax dollars.
In 1997, a Graham Hospital Foundation was formed and a new $6.2 million dollar expansion of the hospital was begun. A $1.4 million dollar challenge grant was issued by local benefactors of Graham to match these funds for the new facility. Within four months of the challenge grant, $1.6 million dollars were pledged and the project begun in 1997. In one year after the project was started, 99 percent of the money pledged to the expansion was paid.
This expansion increased the Emergency Room from 1,500 square feet to over 3,600 square feet and included a designated trauma room, designated cardiac room, three-bed general room, an obstetrical room and pedi room. The emergency room waiting area went from a mere four-chair waiting area to a large area with a television and play section for children.
A new outpatient surgery area was added that includes spacious 22 foot x 20 foot operating rooms with state-of-the-art equipment. There is also a dedicated endoscopy suite and private pre-op admitting and recovery rooms.
Graham Regional Medical Center added a 3,500 square feet specialist clinic complete with its own patient waiting area for the various specialists who come to Graham on a weekly basis. Specialists utilizing this clinic are gastroenterologists; neurologists; urologists; orthopedists; oncologists; cardiologists; ENTs; and podiatrists.
The radiology department was greatly enhanced with this expansion. A new computer tomography unit was purchased and is now located inside the hospital. The laboratory was moved to a larger location with new equipment purchased to run a large spectrum of tests.
In 2003, GRMC opened a Diabetes Education Center to enhance the services offered. This Center is recognized by the American Diabetes Association.
In 2004, Graham Regional Medical Center constructed North Star Imaging, a state-of-the-art MRI facility adjacent to the main hospital.
Future projects for GRMC include the opening of a 16,000 square foot Women’s Center (opening May 2008) and development of a new 16,000 square foot Wellness Center (opening Fall/Winter 2008). The Women’s Center will be dedicated to Women’s Health. Larger birthing rooms with whirlpool baths, laser treatments, massage therapy, education classrooms, dedicated surgery suite and privacy entrance will be built in the Women’s Center of GRMC. The Wellness Center will incorporate a lap pool, aerobic exercise room and enlarged workout area. Cardiac rehabilitation, occupational therapy, respiratory therapy and physical therapy will have their treatment areas expanded with additional equipment to augment their patient care.
Graham Regional Medical Center is blessed with a wonderful new facility, excellent staff, dedicated physicians, a forward thinking vision for the future and a very supportive community. Graham Regional Medical Center is Your Center for Care.