In 1927 in the hills of Kentucky, the Frontier Nursing Service began building a hospital. A year later, Mary Breckinridge, founder and director, saw her dream to bring exceptional healthcare to rural Kentucky come true.
Frontier Nursing University (FNU) roots run deep in Appalachia. For many years, nurse-midwives have met the needs of families, focusing on not only giving women a healthy birth experience, but also knowledge of how to care for themselves and their children. Keeping Mary Breckinridge’s values in the forefront of FNU’s mission, hundreds of thousands of children have been cared for because of the knowledge passed from those who laid the foundation of the hospital in 1927.
In 1975, these values continued; rather than horses, nurse-midwives took Jeeps deep into the hills of Kentucky to deliver care to expectant mothers. In their patients’ homes, nurse-midwives had the unique ability to establish relationships with families.
Today, FNU continues the tradition with more than 57 countries welcoming the skills of nurse-midwives who have studied at FNU. For more on FNU’s rich history, watch the videos below and explore the beginning of Frontier Nursing Service, the Hyden Hospital, Mary Breckinridge’s vision, and our nurse-midwives’ continual commitment to caring for families.
Individual Video Links:
Hyden Gets a Hospital: Part One
Hyden Gets a Hospital: Part Two
Hyden Gets a Hospital: Part Three
Frontier Nursing Service: Nurse-Midwives on Horseback
Frontier Nursing Service: Cherish the Children (Short version)
Frontier Nursing Service: Cherish the Children (Full length version)
A Day in the Life of an FNS Student in 1975
A Trip to the Kentucky Mountains
The Leslie County Contraceptive Study