Ever since The Second Affiliated Hospital Zhejiang University School of Medicine (SAHZU) opened in 1869, which was an Opium Rehabilitation Center managed by a missionary doctor from British Church Missionary Society named Meadows. Several years later, the Opium Rehabilitation Center transformed to a comprehensive hospital named Universal Benevolence Hospital, which was called "Guangji" in Chinese. From 1881 to 1926, Dr. David Duncan Main, a British physician, presided the management and development of the hospital. He dedicated his life to serving people in distress and led the hospital to be the best hospital in Far East at that time. Through all the years, Dr. Main's spirit of challenge has been faithfully practiced as the hospital continues to open new chapters.
In 1885, Universal Benevolence Medical School, affiliated to the hospital, was established as one of the earliest medical educational institutions in China. Since founded, it had cultivated a great number of medical and nursing students. These excellent medical graduates took part into Universal Benevolence Hospital's development and provided their services accross the country.
With the blossom of the Second Industrial Revolution, Universal Benevolence Hospital equipped generators, water tower, X-ray machine and other equipments as well in 1910s. At the same time, Songmuchang Branch of Universal Benevolence Hospital was established for phthisis patients.
During the Anti-Japanese War, Universal Benevolence Hospital treated thousands of the wounded and was once occupied by Japan and renamed as Tongren Hospital. After the victory of Anti-Japanese War, the hospital was taken over by C.M.S until the early days of New China. In 1952, the People's Government of Zhejiang Province took over the hospital officially and renamed it as the Second Affiliated Hospital, Zhejiang Medical College; In 1960, the hospital was renamed as the Second Affiliated Hospital Affiliated to Zhejiang Medical University.
At the time of 1980s, The hospital set up the first Emergency Intensive Care Unit and was awarded one of the first Provincial Civilization Hospitals and one of the first hospitals in China which was accredited as a Class A hospital in the tertiary health care system.
In 1998, The Hospital was ranked in the top 100 hospitals in China. In the same year, the hospital was merged into Zhejiang University and renamed as the Second Affiliated Hospital Zhejiang University School of Medicine.
In 2010, UCLA-SAHZU Joint Academic Center for Diagnosis established, which has become China's biggest telemedicine center.
In 2013, SAHZU Riverside Campus put into operation with a capacity of 1200 beds. In addition, the Hosptial succeeded in Joint Commission International Academic Medical Center Hospital Accreditation (Jiefang Campus), College of American Pathologist Accreditation and WHO SIDCER-FERCAP Accreditation.
In 2016, the Jiefang Campus re-certified by JCI.