Our History

Buena Vista Regional Medical Center History
Through the years we have helped generation after generation reach better health. Our organization has been striving to serve the needs of our region since we were established. Buena Vista Regional Medical Center employees are loyal to our community and will continue to strive for excellence in healthcare.

Being part of the community has been an important goal throughout the years, and with your help and loyalty we can continue to provide health services that you can depend on.

Through the Years with Buena Vista Regional Medical Center


George G. Schaller makes a gift of $100,000 to build a hospital in Storm Lake


March 14, 1951, the first patient is admitted to the new Buena Vista County Hospital. Patient Gayle Wheat is transferred from the Porath Hospital, along with eight other patients and four babies throughout the same day.


The BVCH Auxiliary is formed to promote and advance the welfare of the hospital through service and fundraising.

In the World of Medicine:
APGAR Scoring used on newborns.

In the World of Medicine:
Polio vaccine is successful.

In the World of Medicine:
Ultrasound scanning of pregnant women.

In the World of Medicine:
Pampers diapers are invented.


A $448,000 bond is approved to increase the capacity of the hospital to 88 beds and expand special service areas.


The new West Wing host its Open House. A new clinical laboratory, surgical facilities, and new patient rooms for 31 patients are added.

In the World of Medicine:
First successful human heart transplant.

1967 In the World of Medicine:
The C.A.T. scan is developed.


A coffee shop, gift shop and waiting room are added.

In the World of Medicine:
DNA cloning is invented - birth of genetic engineering.


A $4 million remodeling project is completed, adding 33,600 sq. feet to the facility.

In the World of Medicine
First implantation of the Jarvik Artificial Heart.


A 16-bed inpatient Chemical Dependency Unit for Adolescents is installed on the third floor.

Maternal and Newborn Case Management is formalized, including postpartum home visits and support services.


BVCH purchases the North Campus to house VISTA Addiction and Recovery services.


The hospital expands into health and wellness activities with the purchase of the Fitness & Health Center.

The Adolescent Chemical Dependency unit is closed, and the space is converted to outpatient services.

A Renal Dialysis Unit is added to the growing menu of specialty services.

In the World of Medicine:
Patent issued for unique blood substitute.


Trustees break ground for project 2000, which includes construction of a new specialty clinic, radiology, surgery and endoscopy facilities.


The Specialty Clinic is joined by an enclosed walkway to TriMark BV Clinic.


The new outpatient clinic opens, including Oncology, infusion rooms and state-of-the-art lab and x-ray equipment.


Three new operating rooms, a recovery room, and equipment sterilizing area are completed. The radiology area includes new ultrasound and mammography suites, patient and family waiting areas, and new storage area for x-ray films.

Building plans are initiated which would include; the construction of The Center for Women, an expanded rehabilitation service area, remodeled admitting, emergency and lab services, and a connecting walkway between the hospital and clinic buildings.


BVCH officially becomes Buena Vista Regional Medical Center.


Construction is completed on the expansion and remodeling project in patient care areas. Third floor remodeling for administrative offices is completed and remodeling of the cafeteria began shortly after.

Renal Dialysis is sold to Renal Ventures of Storm Lake.

After months of planning, BVRMC became designated as a Critical Access Hospital (CAH) on November 1, 2005. This designation allowed for additional reimbursement under Medicare guidelines. Following the change to CAH status, BVRMC was licensed for 25 acute care beds and 10 behavioral health beds. This change required approval from the Medical Staff and Board of Trustees.

2009 BVRMC Ranked 17th in the Nation for the top 100 Best Places to Work by Modern Healthcare.

Construction is completed for the new "Bistro" cafeteria. Second floor First Embrace Obstetrics remodeling is also completed.

Stereotactic Breast Biopsy Room was added to the Diagnostic Imaging Services department.

November of 2009 a $2.4 million MRI addition and a 3 Tesla MRI System were added to BVRMC.


Surgical Services was completed in July of 2010 and created 3,400 square feet of new space and renovation of 13,600 existing square feet to include a new surgery room and two endoscopy rooms. Areas were made more comfortable and private.


In 2011 the Oncology Department completed a remodeling project to become more of a healing environment.