The Doors Will Never Close

Summit Foods at Taste Convention in San Diego

On April 24, 1955, Sharp Memorial Hospital unlocked its doors and admitted the first patient, Max Thornburgh of Spring Valley. The key was ceremonially thrown away to show that the doors to Sharp would never close.
The legacy of the gift made in memory of Lt. Donald N. Sharp has exceeded what anyone could have imagined in 1955. Sharp Memorial Hospital has grown with the community over the past seven decades and is a cornerstone of Sharp HealthCare, San Diego’s largest and leading health care provider. It has evolved to become part of the Sharp Metropolitan Medical Campus, which also includes Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women & Newborns, Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital, Sharp McDonald Center, Sharp Allison deRose Rehabilitation Center, and the James S. Brown Pavilion. More than 6,000 employees, affiliated physicians and volunteers care for more than 200,000 individuals and their loved ones at the campus each year.

And Sharp continues to envision the future of health care with the largest set of transformational projects in its history: the Sharp Metropolitan Modernization, part of Sharp’s ENVISION campaign. The Sharp Metropolitan Medical Campus will be infused with new and enhanced clinical facilities and services – incorporating advanced medical and information technology, and increasing capacity and ease of access for our growing community:

• An addition to the Stephen Birch Healthcare Center at Sharp Memorial will house the expanded Cushman Emergency and Trauma Center and new surgery and recovery units.
• The new John M. Sachs Family Center for Generational Health will build upon the current Geriatric Trauma Program. Led by Diane Wintz, MD, trauma surgeon and medical director, the program is committed to treating older adults with the utmost respect and attention to help them feel empowered, cared for and recognized.

• An addition to the north side of Sharp Mary Birch will be built, adding 15 beds.
• A new seven-story tower for patient care will feature 152 beds in advanced medical and surgical units, and will include dining facilities, offices and conference space for clinical and specialty programs.
When many of these projects are completed by 2030, Sharp Memorial will have delivered 75 years of uninterrupted service to the community, and the hospital will be San Diego’s most advanced center for medical care serving the region and beyond.

Sharp’s largest investment in the future of health care in San Diego is only possible with the partnership of a generous community. Through ENVISION, the Foundations of Sharp HealthCare are providing $100 million in philanthropy to ensure that Sharp continues to be the best place to work, practice medicine and receive care for generations to come.
To learn more about ENVISION and see how you can make a difference, visit

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Esteban Villanueva