Strong Memorial Hospital

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Strong Memorial Hospital
Location Rochester, New York, U.S.
Care system Medicare
Hospital type Teaching
Affiliated university University of Rochester Medical Center
Emergency department I
Beds 830
Speciality Cancer, Cardiology, Neuromedicine, Orthopaedics, Pediatrics
Founded 1926

Strong Memorial Hospital (SMH) is an 830-bed medical facility,[1] part of the University of Rochester Medical Center complex (abbreviated URMC), in Rochester, New York. Opened in 1926, it is a major provider of both in-patient and out-patient medical services.

SMH is owned and operated by the University of Rochester and serves as its primary teaching hospital. It offers programs toward medical, dental, or graduate degrees through the School of Medicine and Dentistry. The hospital anchors the University's health care delivery network in the Rochester area. It serves as a primary community hospital and a regional trauma center for the Rochester area. Also part of the network are Golisano Children's Hospital,[2] and URMC affiliate Highland Hospital.[3]

SMH offers care in 40 different specialties and is ranked as one of "America's Best Hospitals" by U.S. News & World Report, and has won the Consumer Choice Award for the best hospital in the area for 12 consecutive years. Strong has signature programs in cardiac care, cancer care, neurology, orthopedics and pediatrics. As an affiliated academic research hospital, patients have access to the latest treatments before they are widely available elsewhere.

SMH is composed of a series of attached buildings. The different sections of the facility range from 3 to 11 floors, although not all areas are accessible to the public. The hospital offers 739 patient beds. Strong provides emergency medical services. SMH is a teaching hospital and patients may expect to interact with faculty, residents, fellows, interns and/or medical students.

Human experimentation[edit]

From 1945 to 1947, Strong was the site of non-consensual human experimentation programs under supervision of the Manhattan Project and its successor, the United States Atomic Energy Commission.[4] A building adjacent to the hospital and connected to it via tunnel, dubbed the "Manhattan Annex," was constructed in 1943 as a field office for the Manhattan Project.[5] Over a period of two years starting in 1945, a total of seventeen patients admitted to Strong for unrelated ailments were injected with a plutonium or uranium solution without their knowledge.[4][6] The Atomic Energy Commission tracked the patients for the rest of their lives; after their deaths, the Commission exhumed their remains for testing. Surviving patients were later informed of the true nature of the experiments in 1974.[4]

In recent years, federal regulations for human subject protection and ethical codes for research have been rigorously rewritten, in light of this experiment and others around the nation. Strong Memorial Hospital now has a unified human research protection program which has become a national leader in developing oversight programs to protect people who participate in research studies.[7] In 2007 the University received the highest level of accreditation possible after demonstrating that extensive safeguards, exceeding federal regulations, were built into every level of its research operation. The Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs (AAHRPP), an independent accrediting body based in Washington, D.C., granted a renewal of the approval in 2010 after an extensive review that included an intensive on-site inspection.[8] The University’s oversight program includes all human research studies, even those that are exempt from regulation by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Food and Drug Administration.


  1. ^
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ [2]
  4. ^ a b c American Nuclear Guinea Pigs: three decades of radiation experiments on U.S. citizens (Report). Subcommittee on Energy Conservation and Power. 1986. Archived from the original on 2002-02-21. 
  5. ^ Eileen Welsome (1999). The Plutonium Files: America's Secret Medical Experiments in the Cold War (PDF). New York: Dial Press. pp. 90–91. ISBN 0-385-31402-7. Retrieved 18 November 2012. 
  6. ^ Eileen Welsome (1999). The Plutonium Files: America's Secret Medical Experiments in the Cold War. New York: Dial Press. pp. 168–169. ISBN 0-385-31402-7. 
  7. ^ "URMCPressroom". Retrieved 24 June 2011. 
  8. ^ "Association for the Accreditation for Human Research and Protection Programs". Retrieved 24 June 2011. 

External links[edit]