Jude was one of the disciples of Jesus, and has been adopted by the Roman Catholic Church as the patron saint of desperate cases. It’s no wonder, then, that when entertainer Danny Thomas founded this hospital for children’s diseases, St. Jude was chosen as its namesake.
That was in 1962 when the survival rate for acute lymphoblastic leukemia, the most common childhood cancer, was 4 percent. Today, thanks in large part to the research conducted at St. Jude, the survival rate is 94 percent.
Some of the most extensive study of childhood diseases in the world is done at St. Jude. The Nobel Prize committee gave testimony to that fact in 1996 when a St. Jude physician was corecipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
Doctors around the world consult with St. Jude researchers on their most difficult pediatric cases. Children from every state and more than 70 countries have received care in the Memphis facility.
But the most remarkable thing about St. Jude is that patients are admitted solely because of their need for the Hospital’s research protocols. Families never have to pay for treatment that isn’t covered by insurance, and those without insurance are never asked to pay. Housing for patients and immediate family members is also provided at no cost. The hospital has an extensive fund-raising effort to cover these costs and to assure that the finest researchers in the world will want to study and practice there.
Danny Thomas’s daughter Marlo explains how St. Jude works and how you can be a part of its future: