Texas Medical History E-Books



Download Full Text (69.2 MB)

Download Abstract (9.5 MB)

Download Section I: The Survey Area (11.8 MB)

Download Section II: The Community Program (13.5 MB)

Download Section III: The Texas Medical Center (6.8 MB)

Download Section IV: Chronic Illness (6.4 MB)

Download Section IV: Proposed School of Public Health (3.1 MB)

Download Section IV: Needs and Educational Facilities for Nurses (7.4 MB)

Download Appendix A (646 KB)

Download Appendix B (7.3 MB)

Download Charts (850 KB)


In 1941 the Texas Legislature appropriated $500,000 to the Board of Regents of the University of Texas to establish a cancer research hospital. The M. D. Anderson Foundation offered to match the appropriation with a grant of an equal sum and to provide a permanent site in Houston. In August, 1942 the Board of Regent of the University and the Trustees of the Foundation signed an agreement to embark on this project.

This institution was to be the first one in the medical center, which was incorporated in October, 1945. The Board of Trustees of the Texas Medical Center commissioned a hospital survey to:

- Define the needed hospital facilities in the area
- Outline an integrated program to meet these needs
- Define the facilities to be constructed
- Prepare general recommendations for efficient progress

The Hospital Study included information about population, hospitals, and other health care and education facilities in Houston and Harris County at that time. It included projected health care needs for future populations, education needs, and facility needs. It also included detailed information on needs for chronic illnesses, a school of public health, and nursing education.

This study provides valuable information about the general population and the state of medicine in Houston and Harris County in the 1940s. It gives a unique perspective on the anticipated future as civic leaders looked forward in building the city and region. This document is critical to an understanding of the Texas Medical Center, Houston and medicine as they are today.


Abstract The Abstract was a summary of the 400 page document including general information about the survey area, community medical assets, and current and projected medical needs which the Texas Medical Center should meet. The 123 recommendations were both general (e.g., 12. “That in future planning, the present auxiliary department of the larger hospitals be considered inadequate to carry an added teaching research program of any sizable scope.”) and specific (e.g., 22. That 14.3% of the total acute bed requirement be allotted for obstetric care, reflecting a bed requirement of 522 by 1950, increasing to 1,173 by 1970.”)

Section I: Survey Area This section basically addressed the first objective of the survey: “define the needed hospital facilities in the area.” Based on the admission statistics of hospitals, Harris County was included in the survey, with the recognition that growth from out-lying regional areas could occur. Population characteristics and vital statistics were included, with future trends discussed. Each of the hospitals in the area and government and private health organizations, such as the City-County Welfare Board, were documented. Statistics on the facilities use and capacity were given. Eighteen recommendations and observations on the survey area were given.

Section II: Community Program This section basically addressed the second objective of the survey: “outline an integrated program to meet these needs.” The information from the Survey Area section formed the basis of the plans for development of the Texas Medical Center. In this section, specific needs, such as what medical specialties were needed, the location and general organization of a medical center, and the academic aspects were outlined. Seventy-four recommendations for these plans were provided.

Section III: The Texas Medical Center The third and fourth objectives are addressed. The specific facilities were listed and recommendations were made.

Section IV: Special Studies: Chronic Illness The five leading causes of death (heart disease, cancer, “apoplexy”, nephritis, and tuberculosis) were identified and statistics for morbidity and mortality provided. Diagnostic, prevention and care needs were discussed. Recommendations on facilities and other solutions were made.

Section IV: Special Studies: School of Public Health An overview of the state of schools of public health in the US was provided. Information on the direction and need of this special school was also provided. Recommendations on development and organization of the proposed school were made.

Section IV: Special Studies: Needs and Education Facilities for Nurses Nursing education was connected with hospitals, but the changes to academic nursing programs were discussed. The needs for well-trained nurses in an expanded medical environment were anticipated to result in significant increased demands of these professionals. An overview of the current situation in the survey area and recommendations were provided.

Appendix A Maps, tables and charts provide background and statistical information for the previous sections.

Appendix B Detailed census data for specific areas of the survey area in the report were included. Sketches of each of the fifteen hospitals and five other health institutions showed historical information, accreditations, staff, available facilities (beds, x-ray, etc.), academic capabilities and financial information.

Publication Date



The Texas Medical Center




Texas, Harris County (Tex.), Houston (Tex.), Texas Medical Center, Academic Medical Centers, Medical Education, Nursing Education, Health Facilities, Hospitals, Health Occupations, Community Health Services


Health and Medical Administration | Medicine and Health Sciences


The original document was typed on non-archival paper. The paper is aged and browned; the type is faded; and the impressions of the original type-blocks were often not distinct. Some parts of this PDF may be difficult to read. Please contact the John P. McGovern Historical Collections and Research Center at mcgovern@library.tmc.edu for clarification of any illegible sections.

The Hospital Study of the City of Houston and Harris County