Dallas VA Celebrates 75 Years of Serving America’s - VA North Texas Health Care System
Attention A T users. To access the menus on this page please perform the following steps. 1. Please switch auto forms mode to off. 2. Hit enter to expand a main menu option (Health, Benefits, etc). 3. To enter and activate the submenu links, hit the down arrow. You will now be able to tab or arrow up or down through the submenu options to access/activate the submenu links.

VA North Texas Health Care System

Menu
Menu
Veterans Crisis Line Badge
My HealtheVet badge
EBenefits Badge
 

Dallas VA Celebrates 75 Years of Serving America’s

World War II Veteran Henry F. Slesthenger joined VA North Texas Health Care System Director Jeff Milligan on Dec. 4 as the Dallas VA Medical Center celebrated its 75th Anniversary.

World War II Veteran Henry F. Slesthenger joined VA North Texas Health Care System Director Jeff Milligan on Dec. 4 as the Dallas VA Medical Center celebrated its 75th Anniversary.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

World War II Veteran Henry F. Slesthenger joined VA North Texas Health Care System Director Jeff Milligan on Dec. 4 as the Dallas VA Medical Center celebrated its 75th Anniversary.

I've been going to the Dallas VA for my health care since 1947 and VA has saved my life many times over the years," said Slesthenger, who is 96 years old and served in the U.S. Army. "It's great they are taking this opportunity to mark the occasion and thank Veterans.

After the City of Dallas won over eight other Texas cities competing for a VA facility, construction began in 1937 on the $1,250,000 hospital. With 200 employees on board, the first patient was admitted on Aug. 19, 1940.

Today, Dallas VA Medical Center is part of the VA North Texas Health Care System which serves more than 117,000 Veterans and delivers 1.4 million outpatient episodes of care each year to Veterans in 38 Texas counties and two counties in southern Oklahoma.

Here are some other fun, historic facts:

1940 History

  • In 1937, there was debate to build the new VA Hospital on the grounds of Southwestern Medical Foundation.

  • At the time it was built, the area was a corporate entity known as Lisbon. For years, the hospital was known as the Lisbon VA.

  • The hospital's formal dedication took place on Sunday, Oct. 27, 1940.

  • The hospital sat on 244.82 acres and the grounds included housing for managers, nurses, attendants, and officers.

  • The annual payroll was $300,000. In 1944, the bed capacity increased to 300.

  • Staff on Jun. 19, 1945 included 18 doctors, 1 dentist, 32 graduate nurses, 56 attendants, 36 kitchen workers, and about 200 clerical and groundskeepers.

Building 2

  • Construction of Building 2, the Laundry, and the duplex cost $8,500,000.

  • In Aug. 1955, patients moved into Building 2 and Building 1 was closed for renovations.

  • The 7th Floor had a solarium and a sun porch.

  • Each ward had a recreation room.

  • Each inpatient had earphones for radio programs or music selections the the hospital’s electronic center.

  • The hospital had 9 operating rooms; 6 with closed circuit television for viewing surgical practices.

  • There was a Dining Hall for 200 ambulatory and wheelchair patients, and a warming kitchen on each floor.

  • The top 2 floors were designated for neuropsychiatric patients and had private bedrooms and individual baths.

Growing Years

  • 1958-1961 were called the "Growing Years" because medical beds grew from 255 to 700.

  • McKinney VA Hospital closed in 1965.

  • The Central Dental Lab opened in 1971; one of only 4 in the entire VA system and now, one of 2 labs.

  • The hospital was air conditioned in 1972. In 1985, the Privacy Project renovated a 16-bed ward into 2 and 3-bed rooms.

  • Dallas VA has 4 Middleton awardees for Research: Dr. Roger Unger, MD; Paul Srere, PhD; Sami Said MD; and Kosaku Uyeda, PhD.

Click here for historical photos.

Share



Get Updates

Subscribe to Receive
Email Updates