Since the establishment of the Siyakso (drug center) in Seoul in 1859, until the early 1930s, medical activities of the Catholic Church in Korea confined to simple medical care centered on the Siyakso established in each province. Although it was not that noticeable compared with the total of medical activities in Korea, it was a charity work across the country, and because of the efforts and enthusiasm of the people who worked on it achieved considerable results.
Between 1921 and 1930, there were 11 Siyaksos in the Dioceses of Gyeongseong, Wonsan, Pyeongyang, Yeongil and others that provided medical benefits for 210,000 people. In addition, in 1921, there were 5,842 inpatients and 989 house calls; a decade later, the number increased to 59,090 inpatients and 6,406 house calls.
In the meantime, the press pointed out that establishments like kindergartens, redevelopment houses, free lodgings, and charity hospitals should be established for the sake of unfortunate people with congenital physical or mental disabilities, and those with acquired physical disabilities and it was desirable to be made up of social projects in which many people participate. This became a great force for making the health care business in churches more active.
This was officially brought up when commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Diocese of Joseon in 1931, where the issue of establishing a Catholic hospital was discussed and determined in detail by the "Youth Association of the Diocese of Gyeongsung”. The following is the introduction of the "Purpose Society of Hospital Supporting Association" announced by the Youth Association at the time.
"As you all know, this year is the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Catholic Diocese of Joseon. There are many good projects to celebrate this milestone, but we believe that a medical institution is considered to be the most necessary and appropriate in view of the phenomenon of Catholic Church in Joseon. The greatest purpose of the Catholic Church is of course saving souls, but to relieve physical suffering is also one big concern.
We have 100,000 believers in Joseon, but we have not yet established a hospital, so when our brethren and sisters, even clergymen and nuns, become sick, they will inevitably be sent to hospitals operated by people of other religions and even heretics. Therefore, they experience a great deal of inconvenience and pain. In addition, as you know well, without any need to say much, the existence of a medical institution has a great effect in spreading the true religion to people of other religions. But this purpose cannot be achieved unless it is a collective effort of the general public."
Opening St. Mary’s Hospital
The establishment of Yeouido St. Mary's Hospital was first discussed while planning the commemoration of the "100th anniversary of the establishment of the Diocese of Joseon" on September 6, 1930. The Maintenance Foundation of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Seoul purchased Murakami Hospital, which was operated by Japanese, located at 39 Beonji, 1 Jeongmok, Gyungseong-bu (currently 38 Beonji, Jeodong 1-ga, Jung-gu) on March 11, 1935. After receiving permission to establish a hospital on April 18, 1935 and repairing and renovating Murakmi Hospital for a year, the historic St. Mary's Hospital opened on May 11, 1936 with Bishop Larribea's benediction ceremony being held on May 1, 1936.
At the time of opening, the hospital had 538 pyeong of surface area, 335 pyeong of floor space, and 24 beds (including infectious disease rooms), outpatients’ section, pharmacy and laboratory were installed. In particular, on the second floor, an oratorium similar to the hospital priest room of today was installed as a Catholic medical institution feature.
The medical staff consisted of four doctors (Park Byeong-rae, Yoon Kun-hee, Ma Hung-ryong, and Lee Heung-bae), one Japanese pharmacist, and 10 nurses (including nine nuns belonging to the Sisters of St. Paul of Chartres). The main medical treatment topics were internal medicine and pediatrics. Dr. Park Byung-rae, who was a university lecturer at the Department of Internal Medicine at Kyungsung Imperial University, was appointed as the first president of the hospital.
The name "St. Mary's Hospital' was made official on July 3, 1935 as proposed by Dr. Park Byeong-rae, the hospital president and agreed upon by Father Yoon Hyung-joon, president of Kyunghyang magazine publishing company, although Bishop Larribea, head of Kyungsung Diocese and chairman of the board, proposed Haesung.
Considering that there were only 5 Catholic medical institutions in addition to 10 Siyaksos in the country in 1936, the opening of St. Mary's Hospital marked the establishment of the first official Catholic hospital in Korea.
The average number of daily visiting patients in 1936 was 15, but after only one year, in 1937, the number increased to 60, which proved the high reliability of Yeouido St. Mary's Hospital at that time. In 1937, Ultratereum, considerably expensive equipment at the time, was purchased at 2,000 won, and there were also plans to expand the entire hospital.
At Yeouido St. Mary's Hospital, a lot of poor patients were taken care of since the hospital opening. In 1940, the hospital began full-scale charitable care (called a charity ward at that time). On September 23, 1946, the hospital acquired Sato Hospital, a private hospital, located at 1 Beonji, Jeodong 2-ga, and practiced charity medical treatment and helped long-term patients.
In 1964, a new charity clinic with a surface area of 318 pyeong, a floor space of 324 pyeong, 4 stories, a basement floor, and 32 beds was built beside the Industrial Disaster Hospital, and operating a leprosy research institute and an outpatient clinic. In 1966, they were transferred to the second affiliate St. Joseph Hospital, and continued their charity treatment. At that time, allocating charity treatment beds to Yeouido St. Mary's Hospital and Gangnam St. Mary's Hospital are changed at the same time as Yeouido St. Mary's Hospital moved to Yeouido because of the CMC charity treatment division reorganization, and the isolated building for charity treatment was closed down.
In 1942, when the Japanese military plot to use the Jesus Sacred Heart School of Theology, located at 1 Beonji, 4 Jeongmok, Wonjeong, as barracks, Bishop Rho Gi-nam, the head of Kyungsung Diocese, opened a parish council to transfer students to the Dukwon Seminary in Wonsan, Hamgyeong-do and it was decided to open a branch of Yeouido St. Mary's Hospital at the school building. After one year's construction from the spring of 1943, the branch was opened with 1,295 pyeong of surface area, 429 pyeong of floor space, 18 hospital rooms and 35 beds in May after the benediction ceremony of Bishop Rho Gi-nam on April 29, 1944. The branch hospital consisted of one doctor (Kwon Ui-jeong - deputy president), six nuns, and six nurses, all of whom treated mainly internal medicine and pediatrics. The average number of inpatients per day was 30, while the number of outpatients was 50.
- 09Designated as a medical institution for Canadian visa issuing physical examination
- 07Opened the NaPro Family Care Center.
- 03Birth of the first baby using the NaPro pregnancy method in Korea
- 01Constructed the Lourdes St. Mary mural for the parking tower.
- 06Completed remodeling the Catholic Maternal • Neonatal Intensive Care Center outpatients.
- 02Designated as a hospice palliative medical institution by the Ministry of Health and Welfare
- 12Opened the Integrated Pain Center.
- 11Full-scale operation of the Maternal/Neonatal Intensive Care Center (peaceful meeting) and Hospice Palliative Medical Center (peaceful star) (Patriarchal Cardinal Yeom Su-jeong's blessing ceremony)
- 09Launched the One Hospital System of Seoul St. Mary's Hospital and Yeouido St. Mary's Hospital (first integrated operation of a secondary and a tertiary hospital in Korea). Opened the Catholic Maternal and Neonatal Intensive Care Center
- 06Joint mass for all those suffering from MERS
- 01Transition from upper class general hospital to general hospital
- 05Hospital remodeling
- 03Opened the International Healthcare Center, Thyroid Center, Spinal Center, and Digestive Organ Center.
- 04Industrial Medical Center moved to Seoul St. Mary's Hospital.
- 03Acquired the medical institution certificate from the Ministry of Health and Welfare (first anniversary)
- 2010.03Hospital Name Change (Catholic University of Korea St. Mary's Hospital → Catholic University of Korea Yeouido St. Mary's Hospital)
- 2009.04Transfer of the Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation Center and BMT patients to Seoul St. Mary's Hospital
- 2006.01Opened the HIFU Cancer Treatment Center.
- 2005.05Achieved 2,500 cases of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.
- 2003.07Opened the Eye Center.
- 1996.06Renamed the hospital as the Catholic University of Korea St. Mary's Hospital.
- 1994.12Expanded Asia's Largest Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation Center.
- 1992.04Opened the Catholic Bone Marrow Transplant Center.
- 1987.03Established the Hospice Department for the first time in Korea.
- 1986.11Established the Catholic Cancer Center.
- 1986.07Closed St. Mary's Hospital in Myeong-dong and moved to a new hospital in Yeouido.(3,000 pyeong of surface area, 13,000 pyeong of floor space, and 625 beds)
- 1983.11St. Mary's Hospital in Yeouido-dong (62 Beonji, Yeouido-dong) foundation ceremony
- 1983.03Successful transplantation of leukemia allogeneic marrow for the first time in Korea
- 1980.05Opened the Gangnam St. Mary's Hospital (520 beds).
- 1977.08Started construction of Gangnam St. Mary's Hospital.
- 1977.02Successful operation of cerebral vascular anastomosis on a child (9 years old) for the first time in Korea
- 1969.03First successful kidney transplantation in Korea
- 1967Installation of an Eye Bank
- 1962.02Organized the Catholic Central Medical Center.
- 1966.11First successful corneal transplant in Korea
- 1961.12Completed St Mary's Hospital (Myeong-dong) (2,893 pyeong of floor space, 300 beds) and conducted all clinical subjects.
- 1958.03Authorized as a general hospital
- 1954.10Authorized as Sungshin University Medical College Hospital
- 1954.05Established St. Joseph Nursing High School.
- 1954.04Established St. Joseph Nursing High School.
- 1936.05Opened St. Mary's Hospital (538 pyeong of surface area, 335 pyeong of floor space, and 24 beds)
- 1935.03Purchased Muragami Hospital
- 1930.09Promotion of medical business commemorating the 100th anniversary of Kyungsung Diocese