Focused on the Future

OSU Medical Center has celebrated many impressive firsts in its 65 years

By: Mary Bransford | Category: Education | Issue: October 2010

A few members of the ER staff at OSU Medical Center (L to R): Shelly Prince, RN; Mark E. Blubaugh, D.O.; Greg Stremel, RN; Melissa Shaw, RN; and Dennis E. Blakenship, D.O, Medical Director, ER Dept.

A few members of the ER staff at OSU Medical Center (L to R): Shelly Prince, RN; Mark E. Blubaugh, D.O.; Greg Stremel, RN; Melissa Shaw, RN; and Dennis E. Blakenship, D.O, Medical Director, ER Dept.

OSU Medical Center has celebrated many impressive firsts in its 65 years – the first pacemaker implant, the first cataract and lens implant surgeries, and was Tulsa’s first hospital to have nuclear medicine. Transformed from a single structure in 1944 to one of the largest osteopathic teaching hospitals in the country, OSU Medical Center continues to celebrate those “firsts” of the past while embracing and focusing on the future.

There have been significant internal and external changes over the years; however the heart of OSU Medical Center is still the same collective beat of its physicians, residents, nursing staff, employees, volunteers and generous donors.

With the support from the legislature, the governor, OSU leadership and dedicated donors, OSUMC Trust took over the hospital ownership last May. Committed to the same caring philosophy and leadership as the original hospital founders, these men and women are making it possible for OSU Medial Center to continue its proud tradition of quality health care. Legislation passed in 2009 allocating state funding of $5 million per year for the next five years to support the continued operations of the medical center. Additional support has come from a multi-year financial commitment by the George Kaiser Family foundation, generous funding from OSU Center for Health Sciences, and other local organizations and philanthropic sources.

This arrangement demonstrates the ability of public and private entities to successfully partner on behalf of the greater Tulsa community and all its ­citizens in need of quality health care.

“OSU Medical Center is critical to the state health care system,” said Howard G. Barnett, Jr., President, OSU-Tulsa and OSU Center for Health Sciences. “OSU Medical Center is the primary training facility for the OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine and our residency program. At the OSU Center for Health Sciences, we take very seriously our mission to provide doctors for Oklahoma and, in particular, our rural communities. Without OSU Medical Center, we would not be able to do the job, which would be a loss to all Oklahomans. We look forward to continuing to work closely with OSU Medical Center to ensure its growth and to strengthen our partnership to train more physicians for Oklahoma.”

Jan Slater, OSU Medical Center CEO, explains, “In addition to training and recruiting talented physicians, we have spent the past months aggressively addressing the needs of the medical center as well as planning for its long term growth. It’s an exciting time as we oversee enhancements, expansions, new equipment and renovations to our facilities. We’re concentrating on our strategic initiatives and have enjoyed sharing recent opportunities and awards of excellence with our community.”  

OSU Medical Center recently received a national award of excellence from Healthstream Research for exceeding industry standards for patient satisfaction in our Emergency Department. “We at OSU Medical Center look to the future with great confidence,” Slater added. “We embrace the critical importance of OSU Medical Center and its role to provide care to many of Oklahoma’s most vulnerable citizens, and the necessity of continuing its osteopathic post-graduate training programs.” Health care manpower is critically low in Oklahoma. Rural communities are in dire need of physicians and allied health professionals. OSU Medical Center performs a vital role by training healthcare professionals that serve in countless communities. With the help of our state leaders, the city of Tulsa, private philanthropists and their Trust, OSUMC can focus on the future.

OSU Medical Center has offered exceptional health care for 65 years. Located in downtown Tulsa, the hospital is the largest osteopathic teaching facility in the country, boasting 11 post-graduate programs that train more than 140 residents each year in both primary care and sub-specialty areas. Together, the school and hospital have trained more than 2,000 physicians, of which more than 900 are actively practicing in Oklahoma.

OSU Medical Center provides numerous highly specialized services, including cardiology care, interventional radiology, and comprehensive wound care. The hospital also partners with OSU Center for Health Sciences and Diagnostic Imaging Associates to provide medical care to Oklahoma’s rural communities with a telemedicine program. This telemedicine program currently includes 36 regional hospital and clinic partners, the largest state-wide telemedicine program in the nation.

For more about OSUMC, the hospital and its emergency services, visit

For more information, contact

OSU Medical Center

744 W. 9th St.
Tulsa, OK 74127
(918) 599-1000

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