Bridgton and Greater Bridgton offer an abundance of world-class healthcare services and facilities. Our flagship community healthcare institution is Bridgton Hospital, a member of the Central Maine Medical Family You and your family have immediate access to an extensive regional community of physicians, surgeons, nurses, dentists, physical therapists, hospitals, medical offices, and pharmacies. Also, for the other beloved members of our families, our pets, excellent veterinary facilities complete the total family healthcare community.

From its origins Bridgton has been what can best be termed a joyfully “physical” place. Clean air, rolling topography, deep forests of pine and spruce and hemlock, good soils, abundant water including lakes and ponds and brooks, pleasant altitude, biological diversity, changing seasons, and an ethic of connecting with the land; a genuinely healthy place to build a good life.

When first settled, Bridgton was a town for the young and strong. This is evidenced by the fact that in 1787, 59% of the settlers were under 21 years of age, and 89% of those were below the age of 40. As the decades passed, the community age demographic began to balance out, and as Bridgton became an active manufacturing center from 1860-1900, with an increased laboring class population, the need for dependable and modern healthcare emerged.

Miss Clara Fogg shall be remembered as the “founding force” of Bridgton’s modern day hospital facility. In 1915, she willed two homes on Main Street to be sold in order to fund the establishment of a modern hospital in Bridgton. In 1917 the NorthernCumberland Memorial Hospital was chartered. In 1920, the grand William Fenderson Perry House on Main Hill was acquired and after many years of dedicated fund raising and building improvement by the entire community the hospital was officially opened on July 1, 1941.

In 1962, the decision was made to construct a new hospital for the upcoming generations. Once again, the Bridgton community came together and through the enlightened actions of many individuals and families the new Northern Cumberland MemorialHospital was proudly dedicated and opened on South High Street in September 1964.
In January 2002, the magnificent new Bridgton Hospital complex, designed by the architectural firm of Architectural Nexus of Salt Lake City, Utah, was completed and dedicated. Thus, the next chapter in the never ending pursuit of excellence in healthcare continues in the Greater Bridgton region. The exceptional regional importance of the Bridgton Hospital is validated by its designation as a “Critical Access Hospital” in 2005. The Bridgton Hospital was also recognized in 2007 by “Hospitals for a Healthy Environment” (H2E) as winner of both the 2007 Partners for Change Award and 2007 Making Medicine Mercury Free Award. Bridgton Hospital consistently demonstrates its dedication to introducing the most advanced healthcare technologies to assure the Greater Bridgton community has access to “world-class” healthcare, including the hospital’s new GE LightSpeed VCT which delivers high quality images of the human body with lowered radiation dose.

Of course Bridgton’s summer resort and camping culture was built upon the rise of the great industrial and port cities of the northeast that by 1860 were plagued by contagious disease, population congestion, air and water pollution, constant noise, offensive odors from factories, and a feeling of disconnection from the New England country virtues of the past; in short poor health. It was the affluent city dwelling families (and not a few celebrities of the day) that could afford to “rusticate or resort” to the mountains, forests, lakes, brooks, and traditional village of Bridgton; they came to restore their physical, mental, and perhaps spiritual health. And it obviously works, for they still joyfully come to this day, and return home healthy and hearty.

In 1902, Charles E. Cobb recognized as the “Father of Boy’s & Girl’s Camps in Maine” opened Camp Wyonegonic for Girls onHighland Lake in Bridgton. In 1911 Camp Accomac for Girls was established by Miss Corinne B. Arnold of Philadelphia in South Bridgton. In order to engage families of summer campers Mrs. J. Bennett Pike established Pioneer camps on Woods Pond in 1914. This healthful legacy continues strongly to this day in Bridgton. (See more on the Recreation Page).

In 1905 Dr. Winthrop Tisdale Talbot, graduate of Harvard University and Boston University School of Medicine stated, “In cultivating general morality and kindly behavior the (summer) camps are helped chiefly through their usefulness in making boys strong vitally, in improving their power of digestion, in increasing their lung capacity, in letting the sunshine pour upon every portion of their bodies”.

By the 1940’s & 50’s, and up until this very day, the “summer camp” provides a healthy and socially enriching alternative for the children and families of the full socio-economic spectrum, whether from the city or the suburbs. Here at the summer camp in Bridgton, good health is regained free from traffic congestion, mall parking lots, asphalted environments, relentless noise, and artificial everything.

Therefore, Bridgton offers both a world-class professional healthcare network of institutions and individual practices, as well as, an outstandingly healthy and sustainable environment in which to work, recreate, educate, create, and build a healthy life for you and your family.