Korean Hospital Honors Harbin Clinic Urologist

An unexpected phone call in early 2015 lead to a very big honor for Harbin Clinic Urologist Doctor James Crane. Crane was named the honorary CEO of Presbyterian Medical Center in Jeonju, Korea.

“I got a call last January asking me if I could come to Korea to get the honor. I wasn’t anticipating it at all,” Crane says.

Crane was not only named the hospital’s honorary CEO, but he was also named an honorary citizen of Jeonju.

Dr. James Crane and his wife Brenda Crane.“I was humbled that the hospital and the city would do this,” Crane says. “It was completely unexpected. Koreans are very generous and giving people. In many ways, I think this was more about my father’s contributions than my own.”

Cranes’ father, Dr. Paul Crane, was a medical missionary, general surgeon and medical academic who directed the hospital and instituted post-graduate residency training programs in multiple specialties in his 20 years of service. Dr. James Crane was born in Korea and lived there until age 11.

“The hospital, founded in 1898, was closed during World War II. After liberation, my father led a team of nurses, doctors, and administrators which reopened the hospital in 1947,” he says. “The hospital was in a 1930’s era building which was expanded and ultimately replaced by a completely new facility. Helping secure the funding for the hospital was a major accomplishment of my father’s. The hospital is now 650 beds with residency training programs in 14 specialties.”

Crane has also helped host doctors and staff from the Korean hospital in Rome, allowing them to emulate some of Harbin’s own practices and take them back to Korea.

“In many ways going back to Korea is like going home for me,” Crane says. “It’s wonderful to see what has happened in Korea and how much it has developed and grown.”