Children's Hospital opened in St. Paul, Minnesota, in 1924 under the leadership of Dr. Walter Ramsey, the first physician in the area to limit his practice to pediatrics. He initiated the policy of permitting patients to pay what they could afford.The minimum rate was $2.50 per day and 80% of early patients paid the full fee. However, the Depression in the 30's meant fewer paying patients and rising costs.
Dr. Ramsey appealed to the Junior League, a group active in philanthropy. In 1933, 25 members of the Junior League formed Children's Hospital Association (CHA). The Board's first action was to set up a Free Bed Fund. In its first 6 months, CHA raised funds to pay bills for 70 patients who were hospitalized for a total of 170 days - all for $1,632.00.
Since 1933, the energetic volunteers of CHA have set about creating fundraising events which have made Children's Hospital Association the single largest cumulative donor to Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota with cumulative contributions of more than $18 million dollars.
On March 25th, Ginger Bailey and Connie Aram; CHA Board members, delivered the first installment of our collection of historical documents to Duane Swanson, Curator of manuscripts at The Minnesota Historical Society.
The Minnesota Historical Society will safe keep our documents and scrapbooks so that they will not diminish further and be made available for others to learn our history and the difference we have made in our community over the past 80 years.