The recently replaced Laguna Honda Hospital was and still is a unique institution. It can trace its roots to 1867 when every city in America had a central facility, an almshouse, where we cared for our poor and destitute, often providing the only cure we had- time to heal. Over the decades our social contract changed, modern medicine exploded, and the shape of these institutions were transformed and replaced. When Dr. Sweet arrived at Laguna Honda it was still an institution from a bygone era. While simultaneously caring for patients in this outdated setting, she took an academic pilgrimage to the very roots of medicine studying the 12th-century German nun Hildegard of Bingen. In God’s Hotel Dr. Sweet takes us too on this unique journey. We gain a new perspective. We experience with her the blistering pace of modern medicine, and what it is leaving in its wake racing forward. God’s Hotel has been featured in the New York Times, New York Review of Books, NPR and Health Affairs.
Dr. Victoria Sweet
Dr. Sweet is an Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. She is also a prize-winning historian with a Ph.D. in history and social medicine. She practiced medicine for more than twenty years at Laguna Honda Hospital in San Francisco, which is where she began writing. Published work include her book on Hildegard of Bingen: Rooted in the Earth, Rooted in the Sky: Hildegard of Bingen and Premodern Medicine(Routledge, 2006) and “Hildegard of Bingen and the Greening of Medieval Medicine” in the Bulletin of the History of Medicine (1999).Her writing has received numerous honors, including the Shryock Medal, the Estes Award, and the Stannard Memorial Award.
When & Where
AIA SF's Health + Science Committee
AIA SF's Health + Science Committee hosts monthly presentations on trends, technology, and other developments affecting the design of health, science, and technology facilities.