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The Ottawa Hospital turns 25: A few things you might not know about the National Capital’s largest health-care provider

The Ottawa Hospital’s three main campuses

Let’s turn back the clock to 1998. It was the year that Apple debuted the iMac, Google was launched to the world, and Canadian readers first met Harry Potter. But did you know that our community also marked a major milestone?

On April 1, 1998, the Civic, General, Riverside and Grace hospitals were brought together to create The Ottawa Hospital.

Today, we serve a population of more than two million people and are ground zero for some of the world’s most cutting-edge medical research. If you haven’t been personally touched by our care, chances are you know someone who has.

As we mark 25 years of serving our community, we wanted to take this opportunity to share a few cool things that you might know about Eastern Ontario’s largest hospital.

Caring for patients from Ottawa and beyond

What’s in a name? We are The Ottawa Hospital, but our world-class, compassionate care extends well beyond the city’s borders. Patients come to us from across Eastern Ontario, Western Quebec, Nunavut and sometimes the east and west coasts because we are the only hospital who can provide them with the specialized care they need.

Visitors at the General Campus

Bringing important care to northern communities

Patients from the Qikiqtani region of Nunavut come to us for treatment and we bring treatment to them. Each year, physicians, residents and technicians from across The Ottawa Hospital travel to Nunavut for a week at a time to see patients–usually in Iqaluit at the Qikiqtani General Hospital and also in communities such as Pangnirtung, Arctic Bay and Resolute.

More than just three locations

You may know that The Ottawa Hospital has three main campuses (the General, Civic and Riverside), but we also operate more than 20 off-campus sites to ensure that our patients receive the care they need where they need it. You will find our care teams at seven kidney dialysis clinics across Eastern Ontario, the Irving Greenberg Family Cancer Centre at the Queensway Carleton Hospital, the breast screening clinic at Hampton Park Plaza, and many more locations providing an array of important services across the region.

We are a giant teaching facility

You may also not know that The Ottawa Hospital enjoys a close partnership with the University of Ottawa. All of our physicians hold academic positions at uOttawa, and we have over 1,100 resident physicians on staff who are in training for various specialties.

Medical students and attendings practice on mannequins

Recognized as one of Canada’s best hospitals

This year, The Ottawa Hospital was named one of the top 10 best hospitals in Canada by Newsweek. Newsweek notes that what sets the best hospitals apart is that they “consistently attract the best people and provide the best outcomes for patients as well as the most important new therapies and research.”

…And one of the world’s best smart hospitals

This year, Newsweek also named us one of the world’s best smart hospitals. This means we’re a world-leader in using state-of-the-art medical technology to deliver better outcomes for our patients and improve the overall health of our community. The only hospital from Ottawa and Eastern Ontario to be included this year, The Ottawa Hospital is ranked 74th in the world and one of the top three in Canada.

The third-largest employer in Ottawa

We’re number three! We’re number three! Not bad considering we’re behind only the federal government and the City of Ottawa. We employ about 17,000 people, and we’ll welcome more than 6,000 additional employees once our new campus opens its doors.

Team members at The Ottawa Hospital

One of Canada’s best employers

In 2023, Forbes named The Ottawa Hospital one of Canada’s best employers. What’s the key to our success? We make it our business to care about people, and we believe that starts with our staff. Just as our team members are committed to providing high-quality, compassionate care to patients, The Ottawa Hospital is committed to creating an environment that values, respects and recognizes our team members.

Our neighbour is Canada’s largest cardiovascular heart centre

Our cardiac patients receive world-class care from the University of Ottawa Heart Institute. Located at our Civic Campus, the Heart Institute is Canada’s largest and foremost heart health centre dedicated to understanding, treating and preventing heart disease.

A maker of milestones

The Ottawa Hospital is the home of many medical firsts in our city, in Canada and in the world. Here are just a few of our achievements over the past 25 years:

  • We are the first and only hospital in Canada to manufacture vaccines and other biological therapies for clinical trials around the world, through The Ottawa Hospital’s Biotherapeutics Manufacturing Centre.
  • We are the first and only hospital in Canada to offer comprehensive support so that all staff and trainees can turn their research ideas into reality, through the Ottawa Methods Centre.
  • In 2015, we became the first hospital in Canada to perform a nerve transfer surgery that restored upper extremity function to a patient with a spinal cord injury.
  • On December 15, 2020, we delivered the city’s first COVID-19 vaccinations to more than 100 health-care workers employed by long-term care homes.
  • In 2021, we administered a world-first in-utero treatment to an unborn child diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder called Pompe disease.

We’re building Canada’s largest teaching and research hospital

Construction is underway at the site of our new campus, and we’re on track with plans that will transform patient experience and reshape the future of health care for our community and region. The new campus will be home to the largest and most modern teaching and research hospital in Canada and will include neuroscience and trauma centres, enhanced surgical suites, outpatient clinics and specialized care. The campus will be a centre for innovation, discovery and learning, where great medical minds will tackle the biggest questions in health care and work together to solve them.

The Ottawa Hospital’s new campus

Take a closer look at what we have planned for the next 25 years and beyond.


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This website gives you common facts, advice and tips. Some of it may not apply to you. Please talk to your doctor, nurse or other health-care team member to see if this information will work for you. They can also answer your questions and concerns.