Spectrum Health Company History Timeline


In 1966, hospitals in Grand Rapids mutually agreed to start all full-time nurses at $6,000 a year.


In 1967, Carolyn G. Baxter was one of the founders and CEO of Better Family Planning, Inc., a private non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation which opened Greater St Matthews Medical Health Center as its first clinic.


By 1983, Better Family Planning received its designation as a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) by the D.H.H.S.


In 1984 officially changed its name from Better Family Planning to Spectrum Health Services, Inc. and opened the Haddington Health Center and began the delivery of primary care health services.


Also in 1989, Oliver Grin, MD, orchestrated the opening of the only neuroscience intensive care unit in the city.


In 1991, Spectrum was instrumental in the establishment of the first in-house school-based health program for students at the Mayer Sulzberger Middle School in West Philadelphia.


Also in 1992, Blodgett Memorial Medical Center merged with Ferguson Hospital, which specialized in colon and rectal diseases, to form the premier Ferguson-Blodgett Digestive Disease Institute.


The children's hospital originally opened in 1993.


In 1994, the Broad Street Health Center began offering primary care services and the Haddington Health Center Site expanded from 1,000 square feet to 9,229 square feet.


Spectrum Health is formed after a 1996 decision by the United States District Court, which approved the merger of Blodgett Memorial Medical Center and Butterworth Health Corporation.


Since 1997, philanthropic support provided gifts totaling more than $408 million.


The funding for this program ended in April 2000.


Spectrum Health Grand Rapids is named 2001 Top 100 Integrated Healthcare Networks by Thomson Reuters (later becoming Truven Health Analytics®).


A gift from Rich and Helen DeVos in 2002 enabled Spectrum Health to purchase the property for the pavilion.

In 2002, the Pennsylvania Association of Community Health Centers (PACHC) created the Carolyn G. Baxter Lifetime Achievement Award.


The adult program, supported by philanthropy from the community, began performing transplants in February 2013.


MedNow™ launches in 2014, giving patients fast, convenient and affordable ways to receive care by connecting to Spectrum Health physicians and advanced practice providers through a smartphone, laptop or computer.

In 2014, Spectrum began providing dental services in its 8 operatories and state-of-the-art dental suite.


Spectrum Health’s adult blood and marrow transplant program reaches another milestone when it performs its 200th transplant on December 31, 2015.


Spectrum Health receives the 2016 Foster G. McGaw Prize for Excellence in Community Service, one of the most revered community service awards in health care, for its programs and services to reach the underserved residents of West Michigan.


In 2017, Spectrum was recognized by the National Committee for Quality Assurance as a Level-3 Patient-Centered Medical Home, the highest designation for health centers and celebrates its 50th Anniversary.


In 2019, Veronica Hill-Milbourne, RN, MS, JD took the helm as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Spectrum.

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How Old Is Spectrum Health?

Spectrum Health is 62 years old.

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Spectrum Health may also be known as or be related to Spectrum Health, Spectrum Health Hospitals and Spectrum Health Hospitals Inc.