It was Governor General Leonard Wood’s personal devotion to the cause of Leprosy patients that intensified the campaign to control the disease thru the creation of colonies and treatment stations. On September 19, 1929 by virtue of Act 1711 of the Philippine Commission, the facility was established initially as Bicol Treatment Station located at Reagan Barracks, Legazpi City with 40 patients and three staff headed by Dr. Mariano Carreon.
During the Japanese occupation in 1946, it was moved to Rawis, Legazpi City and was named Bicol Leprosarium. It was transferred to San Pedro, Cabusao, Camarines Sur, the present site and renamed Bicol Sanitarium on April 19, 1949.
With the success in Multi Drug Therapy in the treatment and management of Leprosy, DOH issued Department Order No. 72 series of 1994 expanding the services to emergency and outpatient care for its immediate catchment areas.
In 2005, Administrative Order No. 2005-0013 mandates that all sanitaria should provide 24/7 services in the 4 major fields in general clinical care specifically Surgery, Obstetrics, Pediatrics and Internal Medicine in addition to its Leprosy service.