Hospital has deep roots in the village

More than a century after Hinsdale San first opened, hospital continues mission to heal

Series: Quintessential Hinsdale | Story 7

Fresh air and rest were the primary medicines administered in the early days of the Hinsdale Sanitarium. Created in the early 1900s as a place for people to rest and heal in a quiet country setting, historians have said it resembled a spa more than a medical facility.

Well over a century later, that facility, now known as UChicago Medicine AdventHealth Hinsdale, continues to keep overall wellness at the center of its care, said Adam Maycock, chief executive officer of the UCM AdventHealth hospitals in Hinsdale and La Grange. Maycock said patients are discharged with information about how to address their spiritual needs and are offered opportunities to relieve stress by visiting the hospital's chapel or spending time with a chaplain. Staff can unwind and regroup with a visit to the outdoor garden on the hospital's second floor.

Treatments, of course, have broadened exponentially since those days in the early 1900s. The latest technologies include the addition of the hospital's first hybrid operating room later this year. Maycock said the facility will allow surgical teams to quickly maneuver between minimally invasive procedures to open interventions as the needs of the patient change during surgery. The hybrid facility eliminates the need to move a patient should more invasive care become necessary.

New imaging technology also is coming to the hospital this winter, Maycock said. In all, patients will have access to about $10 million worth of new technology by the end of 2023.

As a nonprofit hospital, Maycock said the reinvestment of money into the hospital and the community has always been part of the hospital's model. Access to quality healthcare is only the first of many benefits afforded the village by the hospital, said Maycock, who said the values of the community and the hospital are closely aligned. That plays a part in what Maycock said is a mutually supportive relationship between the hospital and Hinsdale.

Many of the 1,200 employees and 400 volunteers who work at the hospital also live in the community.

"There's a pride that comes with that," Maycock said.

Along with access to care, the hospital supports activities and organizations throughout the village that directly and indirectly promote health and wellness. Those efforts include sponsorship of various charity runs and the Wellness House cancer support center, as well as community enrichment activities like Hinsdale's summer concert series, Uniquely Thursdays.

Hinsdale's first responders are partners in the hospital's commitment to caring for the people of Hinsdale. Maycock said hospital leadership meets regularly with village to meet the needs of the police and fire departments with events like onsite trainings.

"We try and make it a very open door for making this place just a great place to live," he said.

Maycock said the Hinsdale community returns the favor through efforts including the Hinsdale Hospital Foundation, which most recently has collected almost $5 million in community pledges toward an upgraded neonatal intensive care unit that is expected to open in 2025.

"The community has been tremendously supportive. It's clear that this is the community's hospital," Maycock said.

Community members also support the hospital as volunteers. They offer friendly greetings to patients and families as they enter the hospital, offer guidance to help visitors find their way on the hospital's campus, and deliver mail and smiles to people in the hospital's care.

Community support of the hospital began even before the original Hinsdale Sanitarium broke ground. According to historical records, Hinsdale resident and Civil War veteran Charles Kimbell bought the 10 acres on which the original sanitarium was built and gave founders David and Mary Paulson 20 years to repay the loan.

The hospital's affiliation with the Seventh-Day Adventist Church began in 1917, according to historians, but the influence of the church on the facility's mission and methods of care began with the Paulsons, both of whom are said to have followed the teachings of the church and believed in the treatment of the whole patient - body, mind and soul.

The church and its commitment to physical and emotional health remain part of the hospital today. Maycock said church leaders serve on the hospital board to help guide fiduciary decisions, oversee quality and more.

For more than a century the hospital has continued to grow, expand and evolve on and around those original 10 acres. As the hospital approaches its 120th anniversary, Maycock said he's proud of the care the hospital has provided over the years and the relationship it has with the village and surrounding area.

"I'm happy to play a small part," he said.