National Jewish Health

National Jewish Health is the leading respiratory hospital in the nation. Founded 114 years ago as a nonprofit hospital, National Jewish Health today is the only facility in the world dedicated exclusively to groundbreaking medical research and treatment of patients with respiratory, cardiac, immune and related disorders. Patients and families come to National Jewish Health from around the world to receive cutting-edge, comprehensive, coordinated care.

Organizational Overview

National Jewish Health
1400 Jackson Street
Denver, CO 80206
(2008)National Jewish Medical and Research Center
Our Mission since 1899 is to heal, to discover, and to educate as a preeminent health care institution.

We serve by providing the best integrated and innovative care for patients and their families; by understanding and finding cures for the diseases we research; and by educating and training the next generation of health care professionals to be leaders in medicine and science.

National Jewish Health is committed to never say never to our patients and their families. The dedicated faculty and staff provide an unmatched level of care and service, and our researchers are making incredible breakthroughs for respiratory, cardiac, immune and related conditions.

In 22 locations across the Denver metro area and Colorado, we are treating more patients than ever in our 114-year history.

Our physicians and researchers are leading authorities in their fields and serve as international resources for professional education and medical consults. In 2013, 24 physicians were named "America's Top Doctors" and 22 were named "Top Docs" in Denver.

National Jewish Health has been ranked the number one hospital for pulmonology for 15 of the 17 years that U.S. News & World Report has ranked the specialty in its Best Hospitals list.

The generosity of our donors makes all of this possible, and we are proud to be ranked a four-star charity for four straight years by Charity Navigator.

Executive Director Statement

Message From Our President and CEO
National Jewish Health - A Unique Health Care Experience

Being cared for at National Jewish Health is a unique health care experience. Patients come from around the world to seek our expertise and receive the highest quality personalized attention and care. We do not believe in the 15-minute patient encounter or just writing a few prescriptions. We provide the comprehensive education and care that our patients need.

We also integrate our research and clinical efforts at the point of the patient, so that patients have access to the latest medical advances and great discoveries made in not only our labs but also others around the world. It is the philosophy of National Jewish Health to take these discoveries and integrate them into our programs to deliver the very best in preventive and personalized medicine.

As a nonprofit institution since 1899, National Jewish Health continues to provide substantial amounts of charity care, which is generously supported by donors from around the world.

Since the first patient entered our doors more than a century ago, we have expanded our areas of expertise and developed many unique programs that set us apart from other institutions. We operate a kindergarten through eighth grade day school for children who are challenged with chronic illness. We also have nationally renowned smoking cessation and weight management programs. These programs have assisted hundreds of thousands of people via the Internet and phone, addressing the two leading causes of behavior-associated, preventable death in the United States -- tobacco use and obesity.

Our dedicated faculty and staff continue to develop other new and unique programs that address total health as part of our commitment to move from reactive to proactive medicine. We will continue to meet and exceed your expectations in all areas of the care we deliver.

Michael Salem, MD
President & CEO

Background Statement

In the 1880s, Frances Wisebart Jacobs, the "Mother of All Charities" and the founder of United Way, first conceived of the idea for a free hospital for indigent tuberculosis victims. The National Jewish Hospital for Consumptives opened in 1899 in Denver under the motto, "None may enter who can pay - none may pay who enter," and for the first 70 years of the institution's existence, all patients received care at no charge. As the institution has grown into a world-renowned center for the research and treatment of respiratory, cardiac, immune and related diseases, Wisebart Jacobs' original mission of benevolence has remained a part of the DNA of National Jewish Health. Last year, the institution provided over $19.7 million in free and heavily subsidized care to patients in need. In addition, more than one-third of the prescriptions dispensed from the campus pharmacy each day are given free of charge.

The services we provide include the treatment and research of respiratory, allergy, immunology, cardiology, gastroenterology, rheumatology and infectious diseases. We also provide occupational health, psychological health, rehabilitation, and sleep and wellness services, such as smoking cessation, weight management, nutrition and education programs. The National Jewish Health Lung Line®, a free service staffed by registered nurses, has fielded 1.35 million calls since it was created in 1983. National Jewish Health also includes the Center for Genetics and Therapeutics, which studies the complex genetics of lung diseases, the Integrated Bioinformation and Specimen Center, which stores anonymous profiles of participating patients to provide a wealth of information for researchers and clinicians, and the Minimally Invasive Diagnostic Center, which is investigating and performing innovative new therapies for asthma, emphysema and other conditions. The Lung Cancer Center also offers a full range of state-of-the-art diagnostic and treatment options, and we encourage and provide preventive lung cancer screenings for early detection, key to the effective treatment of lung cancer.

Patients come here from all over the United States and many foreign countries; our physician/scientists lead their fields, publishing articles in prestigious journals and speaking at the leading conferences. We educate post-doctoral and post-medical school fellows who use the knowledge gained at National Jewish Health for the rest of their careers.

Impact Statement

National Jewish Health is known worldwide for treatment of patients with respiratory, cardiac, and immune diseases and for groundbreaking medical research.

*The number one respiratory hospital in the nation for 15 of the last 17 years, according to U.S. News & World Report.

*Among the best pediatric respiratory hospitals in the nation, as ranked by U.S. News & World Report.

*The Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems ranks National Jewish Health in the top 1 percent of hospitals in the nation, a measurement of our commitment to patient satisfaction.

*Despite our small size, we are in the top 7 percent of institutions in the country funded by the NIH, in terms of absolute dollars.

*Ranked among the leaders worldwide in the impact of our scientific publications: 12th in molecular biology & genetics; 15th in biology and biochemistry; and 22nd in immunology, as ranked by Thomson Scientific.

*Leading clinical laboratories in the world for Mycobacteriology, Complement and Beryllium Exposure.

*In 2007 and in 2011, the Morgridge Academy at National Jewish Health received the USDA HealthierUS School Challenge Gold Award.

*Twenty-four National Jewish Health physicians were named the best in the entire nation in "America's Top Doctors," published in 2013 by U.S. News and World Report and Castle Connolly.

*Twenty physicians at National Jewish Health were named "Top Docs" in the 2013 ranking of Denver-area physicians by 5280 magazine.

*On April 8th, 2010, National Jewish Health was recognized by the Colorado House and Senate for our vital role in serving the health needs of Colorado citizens and the opening of our Lung Cancer Center.

*Our faculty helped write the NHLBI 2007 Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Asthma.

*Home to the Editors-in-Chief of two major peer-reviewed publications:
-Journal of Allergy & Clinical Immunology: Donald Leung, MD
-Journal of COPD: James Crapo, MD

The limitations of our campus have presented challenges. Our growth in recent years has strained existing facilities - nearly 150 employees moved earlier this year to offices off campus. We have also seen the demand for charity care grow 181 percent since 2008. Patients come to us for the treatment they receive nowhere else. We accept the toughest medical cases, even though the compensation we receive for these patients' personalized care rarely matches the time we spend treating them.

In response to the growing need, National Jewish Health increased charity care spending to continue to provide medical services to those less fortunate. To help more patients, we also revised the income guidelines for our Charity Care Program to provide help for people with household incomes of up to 250 percent of the poverty level (based on federal poverty guidelines).

Board Chair/President Statement

We recognize that our patients' problems often involve more than just the lungs, and have invested significant resources to provide a truly integrated and coordinated approach to caring for the whole patient

Rich Schierburg,
Chair, National Jewish Health Board of Directors

Needs Statement

Goals and objectives over the next 3-5 years:

As we continue to implement the objectives outlined in our 10-year strategic plan: The Decade of Innovation, we are focused on continuing as the world leader with new innovative, integrated research and clinical processes in asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), heart disease, allergy, immunology and lung cancer.

In 2011, National Jewish Health purchased from Denver Public Schools 7.5 acres of land adjacent to our 14.5-acre main Denver campus. The Denver City Council unanimously approved a request by National Jewish Health to rezone the former Gove Middle School property to a hospital campus zone. The property significantly improves prospects for the continued expansion of our main health campus in an otherwise fully developed section of the city and maintains our commitment to stay in our historic Denver location.

Our concentrated efforts, decade after decade, have enabled us to advance the course of medicine and save lives. To ensure that we can continue to further our clinical, research and educational mission, additional strategic objectives include the development of preventive and personalized medicine, integration of clinical and research efforts, expansion of national wellness programs and reduced reliance on donations to cover operating expenses.

"As a native of Denver, I knew about National Jewish Health, and I knew it was the best."
-Dave Savage, Denver

"I am forever grateful to National Jewish Health. They turned my life around."
-Shirley Stafford, Aurora

"If it wasn't for Dr. Fenster ordering the right tests, I would not have had a good prognosis. He saved my life."
-Christopher Orris, Westminster

"National Jewish Health has been a positive experience for my family. The doctors and technology there are awesome. I recommend National Jewish Health to all of my friends and family."
-Rebecca Aguirre, Westminster

"Morgridge Academy is a family. At his previous schools, Avery felt like a number. At Morgridge Academy, they care, and they want to help."
-Pam Becker, Denver, mother of Morgridge Academy student Avery Becker

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