The saga of Sri Sathya Sai General Hospital starts in the 1950s when the tiny hamlet of Puttaparthi lacked even the basic amenities of health, education and potable water. Moved by the plight of the villagers including pregnant women who had to trudge long distances to receive medical care, the compassionate mother Eshwaramma pleaded with her son, Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba to provide facilities for health, education and water to the villagers. In response to The Mother’s plea, His universal mission of mercy took a distinctive turn through establishment of institutions of service that stand today as tall testimonies of Divine love and compassion.
The foundation stone of this hospital was laid down on the most auspicious day of the birthday of Bhagawan Baba on 23rd November in 1954. The original Hospital building which was inaugurated on 4th October in 1956 was constructed on the hill south of Prasanthi Nilayam. The original building had only one floor and consisted of a large central room flanked on either side by two smaller rooms. There was a verandah skirting the building. The center room had a screen in the middle to divide the male and female OPDs. Adjacent to the female OPD was a small room for deliveries. Next to this was the female ward with four beds for in-patients. Similarly, adjacent to the male OPD was a pharmacy with a window facing outwards and there was a male ward next to it.
Baba’s mission of mercy for the sick and the poor was not confined to starting the hospital. Swami gave the hospital a van, in which the doctors and paramedical staff would go on every Thursday and Sunday to nearby villages to reach those who could not come all the way to the hospital. This mobile medical service also served to create health awareness among the villagers of neighbouring villages of Kammavarupalli, Kovilaguttapalli, Amagondapalyam etc.
The southern part of the present building was inaugurated on February 29th 1984. This building boasted of an operation theatre, a labour ward, an ante-natal and a post-natal ward along with a section for medical and surgical casualty with an inpatient facility. The dental department was started in this year. Obstetricians at the hospital started performing surgeries like Caesarean section. General surgical procedures were started a year later. On 22nd November 1991, the Northern part of the present building was inaugurated in the Divine presence by Shri. N. Janardhana Reddy, the then Hon’ble Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh. This took place at the same time as Sri Sathya Sai Super Specialty Hospital. The General Hospital was considered as the base hospital from where referrals were made to the Super Specialty Hospital. Well-organized Medical and Surgical Departments became operational under the able leadership of doctors who were inspired by the Lord to participate in the Divine mission. This broadened the scope of the hospital in terms of services offered. Another feather in the cap for the hospital was the addition of Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit in the year 2007. By the grace of Bhagawan, the hospital has now acquired a new extension block in 2015.
The spacious new extension block inaugurated on 22nd October 2015 houses the departments of General medicine with Casualty, Emergency ward, Inpatient wards, Dental, Ophthalmology, ENT and Gastroenterology OPD, X-Ray, Physiotherapy, Podiatry, Laboratory, Administration and Library. It also has a state of the art seminar hall for academic and cultural purposes.
The seed sown by the Avatar of the age, the tender sapling personally nurtured by the Divine hands has now grown into a mighty tree with many branches. In today’s world, it is a great miracle to witness the functioning of such a hospital which is prompted by selfless and unconditional love. It is by the Divine benevolence and grace alone, such a stupendous task of 60 years of free medical service is being made available to all. It also stands as an example of the spirit of oneness, where the suffering of one is the suffering of all.