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Stephens Memorial Hospital Celebrates 50 Years of Serving the Community

NORWAY, ME  - February 4, 2007 marked the official 50 year anniversary of Stephens Memorial Hospital.  The medical staff at SMH has evolved from 8 physicians in 1957 to 38 physicians on the active staff offering services to patients in many specialties.

 Planning initially began for Stephens Memorial Hospital in the 1940s.  The hospital was named for Charles Asbury Stephens, a local author and medical doctor, although Dr. Stephens never actually practiced medicine.  Located in the former Foster House with an attached brick wing, the hospital opened in 1957 with 25 beds. A new wing was constructed in 1967 bringing the total number of patient beds to 41.  The Special Care Unit, consisting of four beds, was created in 1971 through a renovation of rooms on the medical surgical unit. 

Two new wings were unveiled in 1977, increasing the total number of beds to 50 and the original Foster house was torn down.  The 70s and 80s brought 24-hour in-house emergency physician coverage in the emergency department and the acquisition of nuclear medicine and ultrasound technology to the imaging department. Russell's Ambulance Service was purchased in 1990 and PACE Paramedic Service was established as a department of the hospital, offering the first 24/7 paramedic coverage to the community. 

The latest hospital renovation was completed in 2004, which enlarged the emergency room, added endoscopy and MRI suites, and centralized the Women's Imaging Center.  Most recently a 64-slice CT scanner and a picture archival communications system were acquired for the Imaging Department.

Governor Baldacci and the Legislature were among the first to congratulate SMH on their 50th anniversary. There will be celebrations throughout the year to commemorate this milestone.

Stephens Memorial Hospital is an affiliate of Western Maine Health, which is part of the Maine Health® family.  Visit Western Maine Health on the Internet at

Health Information

181 Main Street, Norway, Maine 04268 | (207) 743-5933, TTY (for the hearing impaired): (207) 743-1597