A Walk Through ZSFG’s History

For 150 years, Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital has remained a stronghold in the city of San Francisco. From earthquakes to influenza, and influenzas to pandemics, Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital continues to provide compassionate care to all San Franciscans.

August 28, 1872


City and County Hospital Opens

A wooden structure opens on Potrero Avenue to treat the City’s public health needs.


Training School for Nurses was Established

Nurses shadowed medical faculty and raised awareness on the standards of patient care.


Arrival of Horse Drawn Ambulances

San Francisco was the first city to provide government run ambulances.


The Great Earthquake Hits

After surviving a devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake the General became a mecca where the sick and injured sought treatment and comfort.


New Buildings Open

The newly designed San Francisco General Hospital allowed for infectious patients to be treated separately and an open ward with plenty of sunshine for tuberculosis patients.


Maternity Hospital Opens

The growth at San Francisco General continued with the opening of the maternity ward.


World War II Brings New Medical Advancements

During World War II staff were drafted and brought back with them field advancements.


San Francisco Hospital Gets a New Name

San Francisco Hospital changed their name to San Francisco General Hospital.


Premature Birth Clinic Opens

In response to challenges such as mothers having no prenatal care, the hospital established a premature birth clinic for high risk mothers.


Trauma Center Opens

The new hospital was designed to facilitate the fastest and most seamless movement of patients from the paramedics in the field to the operating room and then to critical care.


First Aids Case is Confirmed in San Francisco

Ward 86 at San Francisco Hospital was the center of care and treatment during the San Francisco Aids epidemic. This model of care would eventually become the worldwide standard.


Designated Only Level 1 Trauma Center

San Francisco General Hospital became the only level 1 trauma center throughout the bay area.


TBI Program Launches

The traumatic brain injury program was created to optimize care for patients with serious brain injuries, providing specialized and cohesive care in the operating rooms, intensive care unit and rehabilitative care.


New Construction Begins

The new acute care and trauma building was built. It was nine stories, world class, seismically safe, technologically advanced, environmentally sound and was designed to provide the best possible patient care in a warm and healing environment.



During the Covid -19 pandemic, ZSFG helped anyone in need and was a critical public health resource for information, support and vaccine information.