History of Morton Comprehensive Health Services

Robert Russa Morton

The beginning of Morton Comprehensive Health Services began 100 years ago. In 1921, the American Red Cross opened the Maurice Willows Hospital in Tulsa north to provide assistance to victims of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre. Willows was then director of the Tulsa Red Cross.

In 1932, the City of Tulsa replaced the hospital with a new municipal hospital at the corner of Pine and Greenwood.

In 1941, the City of Tulsa transferred management of the municipal hospital to a board of community representatives. The hospital was renamed Moton Memorial Hospital after Robert Russa Moton.

Moton served as president of Tuskegee Institute from 1890-1915. He succeeded Booker T. Washington. (More information about Moton can be viewed at http://www.motonmuseum.org)

In 1967, after a history of serving Tulsa’s minority and economically disadvantaged populations, Moton Memorial Hospital closed. In 1968, the facility reopened as Moton Health Center, was an ambulatory care center.

In 1972, the then Department of Health, Education and Welfare (now the Department of Health and Human Services) gave grant support to the health center. And today, Morton is affiliated with the Bureau of Primary Health Care. Previously, the hospital was supported by the Office of Economic Opportunity and the Tulsa City-County Health Department.

In 1983, and as required by BHC, the center was renamed. The name chosen was Morton Comprehensive Health Service in honor of W. A. Morton, M.D., a local physician with a distinguished record of service at Moton Memorial Hospital.

In 1998, the Midtown Family Health Center – Homeless Clinic opened to serve the health care needs of area homeless populations.
In 2002, the East Tulsa Family Health Center began serving the growing Hispanic and Asian communities in east Tulsa.

Also, in 2002, the Nowata Family Health Center offered services to the local community and surrounding counties in northeastern Oklahoma.

In 2006, Morton moved into a new 60,000 square foot facility funded by the citizens of Tulsa County through Vision 2025.

In 2008, Morton became one of only two federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) in the state of Oklahoma to receive The Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Health Care Organizations (JCAHO) (To learn more about The Joint Commission, see http://www.jointcommission.org/ ).

Today, Morton has six locations

– Main Site, 1334 N. Lansing Avenue

– East Tulsa Family Health Center, 11511 East 21st Street

– West Tulsa Family Health Center, 6116 W. 11th Street

– Nowata Family Health Center, 207 S. Locust Street

– Midtown Homeless Clinic, 102 N. Denver

– Morton’s Family Health Services, 2325 South Harvard Avenue

The Morton primary care health system is a nonprofit corporation with 501(c)(3) IRS status and is governed by a multicultural board of directors comprised of community representatives and patients. As a FQHC, Morton provides medical services to northeastern Oklahoma and is able to offer its services on the ability of the patient to pay as defined by federal poverty guidelines. It is recognized as a Federally Qualified Health Center, Joint Commission accredited and a United Way Agency.

Historical Timeline of Morton Comprehensive Health Services

Originally named Maurice Willows Hospital
City of Tulsa replaces Willows hospital with a new municipal hospital
Moton Memorial Hospital
Moton Health Center
Morton Comprehensive Health Center
Midtown Family Health Center – Homeless Clinic opened
Nowata Family Health Center and the East Tulsa Family Health Center opened
Morton moved into its new main location at 1334 N. Lansing Ave.
Morton receives full accreditation status from The Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Health Care Organizations (TJC)