Barstow Community Hospital555 S 7th Ave, Barstow, CA 92311
History:From its inception, Barstow Community Hospital has been a success story of community commitment. Prior to Barstow Community Hospital (BCH) being built, local area patients in critical condition were treated at the Marine Base hospital, while those who were deemed able to travel were sent to hospitals more than 90 miles away in the San Bernardino area. From 1953 to 1956, the Barstow Lions Club along with the Fireman's Service Club raised funds through the Hill/Burton Act to build the hospital. Through these efforts, funds were donated by private citizens and raised through various fundraising activities until the goal was reached. Fundraisers included civic leaders going door-to-door soliciting donations, local-area waitresses donating their tips one day a week to the cause, among other fundraising activities. Other civic groups such as the Barstow Rotary Club donated the landscaping for the new hospital.In the summer and fall of 1957, Barstow Community Hospital was both a symbol of pride and a source of embarrassment to the area. The construction of the $504,000 facility was complete and dedicated in June of 1957, however, the hospital remained vacant for more than six months because the hospital did not have enough operating money to open its doors. The hospital needed $65,000 to cover operating expenses for 90 days. This hospital saga was picked up by media nationwide, including the Los Angeles Times and Life Magazine. Funds to open BCH were not provided until local voters gave the city legal authority to run the facility in a November 26, 1957, election. In January 1958, Barstow Community Hospital, a one-story, 26-bed facility (the current 100 nursing wing), opened its doors to the community.