What Is a General Hospital?

general hospital

A general hospital is a large medical facility that provides care for all types of patients. It is generally staffed by a wide range of doctors, nurses, technicians and other support personnel. In addition, many general hospitals have specialty departments, which focus on specific areas of medicine. The most common of these specialty departments are oncology, surgery, obstetrics and pediatrics. Other specialized facilities include gynecology, gastroenterology, neurology and psychiatry.

The overall operations of a general hospital are often overseen by a board of directors, which has full responsibility for the conduct and efficient management of the facility. This governing body establishes policy and, on the advice of a medical advisory board, appoints a medical staff and an administrator. It also exercises control over expenditures and has the responsibility for maintaining professional standards.

It is also important to note that most general hospitals are owned by private companies, rather than the government. This means that they operate under a different set of laws and regulations than government-owned hospitals. Nonetheless, they provide the same essential services to their patients.

A large part of a general hospital’s function is to deal with mental health issues, especially the more serious ones. In the past, it was common for psychoanalysts to work at general hospitals, as they viewed the setting as ideal for their research and practice of psychosomatic medicine. Psychoanalysts developed theories such as transference, countertransference and negative therapeutic reaction that helped to shape modern medicine.

Psychiatric services at a general hospital were also bolstered by the introduction of psychopharmacologic drugs in the 1950s. These medicines made it possible to deinstitutionalize some psychiatric patients, allowing them to go home and live in community settings instead of being held in state hospitals. Moreover, they reduced the number of patients with long-term, chronic disorders and allowed many of these individuals to be placed in more appropriate treatment environments.

Today, a general hospital is usually one of the largest medical centers in a city or town. Several of the larger ones in the United States are renowned for their cutting-edge approaches to medical procedures and research. They are also known for their superior teaching programs, which help to prepare doctors and other professionals for future careers in the field.

The ABC soap opera General Hospital has been on the air for over 60 years and is currently the alphabet network’s only surviving daytime drama. It has faced stiff competition from rivals on other networks over the decades, but despite low ratings in the 1970s and early 1980s, the series was saved by ABC’s willingness to give it an extended run of 45 minutes in 1978. General Hospital is produced by Plitt Theatres and Selmur Productions, and the show was formerly co-owned by ABC before the company acquired the rights to the series outright in 1968. Today, the soap is distributed by the Disney/ABC Television Group.