Presbyterian Hospital patient records


An incomplete set of records of patients treated at Presbyterian Hospital. The information contained in the records varies tremendously over the century documented here. Older records generally have less information than newer ones. As the 20th century progressed, basic information about medical treatment is supplemented by temperature charts, laboratory and radiology reports, nurses' and social workers' notes, photographs, and x-rays.

The 1872-1915 casebooks contain medical cases only; surgical cases were bound separately. During this period, a new record was created for the patient upon each admission. From 1916, information on medical and surgical treatment provided to a patient during all admissions to the hospital was filed under the same unit number. Sloane Hospital for Women and Vanderbilt Clinic patient records were interfiled with Presbyterian's starting in 1928. Patient records of Babies Hospital were added in 1929. The Neurological Institute's patient records were interfiled with Presbyterian's starting about 1940.


Presbyterian Hospital (New York, N.Y.)

Date [inclusive]: 

1872-1929, 1941-c. 1970s.

Physical Description: 

69.25 cubic feet (59 vols. and 54 records cartons)



Because the records include Protected Health Information (PHI) as defined by the US Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), access is allowed only under the terms of Archives and Special Collections’ Access Policy to Records Containing Protected Health Information.

Because of staff constraints and the lack of a name index, Archives & Special Collections cannot search for individual records.  Microfilm of much of Presbyterian’s post-1928 patient records are held by the New York-Presbyterian Hospital Medical Records Department and persons wishing to locate the records of individuals should contact them.

Boxed records are stored off-site and will take 1-2 days to retrieve. Researchers must call in advance to use the collection.

Cite as: 

Presbyterian Hospital Patient Records, Archives & Special Collections, Columbia University Health Sciences Library.