Innovations & Achievements

As a relatively young medical school (the first School of Medicine class graduated in 1932), Duke had a higher percentage of its medical staff in service than other institutions, and saw some of its top faculty and residents leave to join the war effort. During their time in England, the 65th General Hospital staff gained a reputation for their excellent patient care and innovative methods. They established one of the first blood banks among U.S. hospitals in the European Theater, built their own still to make distilled water for intravenous fluids, devised items such as a stand to help prevent contamination during neurosurgical procedures and closed cuffs for surgical gowns, and performed exceptional work with heart surgeries and restoring head injuries. While overseas, they treated over 17,250 patients and had an astonishingly low mortality rate of 0.4%.

Duke University Medical Center Archives
Box 3702, Durham, NC 27710

(919) 383-2653