The General Hospital Stars Who Have Been On The Show The Longest

When you turn on "General Hospital" each day, you often feel like you're sitting down for an hour with members of your family in front of you on a screen. After all, when characters come into your living rooms day in and day or for years, you get to know them like you'd know a best friend. Like in real life, your friends may come and go, moving away and returning, just like they do on your favorite soaps. Others may stay and be a constant, but whenever those old friends return, it's like they never left.

"GH" has three such characters played by three beloved stars who have been a part of the soap's canvas for nearly 45 years, per IMDb. Each one can still be seen in 2022 as part of hot, front burner storylines and are as familiar as they ever were decades ago when they first got their starts in Port Charles way back in 1977.

Genie Francis still delights General Hospital fans as Laura

As one half of the soap opera couple that helped save "General Hospital" in the late 1970s and early 1980s, Genie Francis began playing Laura Vining Webber Baldwin Spencer Collins on February 8, 1977 (via when she was just 14 years old. As a teen Laura, she was rebellious and began a romance with Scotty Baldwin, marrying him as soon as she was old enough. Then, in one of soap operas' most memorable plots, Laura was raped by Luke Spencer while still married to Scotty, but then the show changed course and re-wrote the rape as a seduction as Laura fell for Luke and then married him in the most-watched soap episode ever in 1981 (via TV Insider).

Francis chose to leave "GH" in 1982, but returned again in 1983 and 1984 for guest appearances, before a 1993 comeback that lasted until 2002. Francis also hopped to other soaps in between "General Hospital" stints, including with roles on "Days of Our Lives" and "The Young and the Restless" before returning to "GH" on a more permanent basis in 2015 (via IMDb). In 2018, she was taken off contract, but her loving legion of fans protested and Laura was brought back before the end of the year (via TV Insider) when she became Port Charles' mayor and she has remained a part of the soap's canvas ever since.

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Kin Shriner still makes fans laugh as Scotty Baldwin

Scotty Baldwin and Laura Webber were one of "General Hospital's" first young popular couples, and the actors who play them began in their roles within months of one another. While Genie Francis made her debut on the soap in February of 1977, Kin Shriner began playing Scotty on August 2, 1977 and has been bringing the character to life off and on ever since, according to Losing Laura turned Scotty into an embittered scoundrel for many years, but in the end he always shows his heart of gold when it comes to the people he loves.

Shriner left "GH" several times over the years, first in 1980 to take a role on the short-lived soap, "Texas," only to return a year later and catch the bouquet at Luke and Laura's wedding before taking off again. Shriner also starred as Scotty on the "GH" spin-off series "Port Charles" while also taking roles on other soaps like "As the World Turns" and "The Young and the Restless" (via IMDb). Shriner returned to the "General Hospital" fold for the last time in 2013 and it's where he's remained ever since.

Leslie Charleson still runs the Port Charles General Hospital as Dr. Monica Quartermaine

Just two weeks after Kin Shriner made his "General Hospital" debut as Scotty Baldwin, Leslie Charleson made her own debut on the ABC soap opera as Dr. Monica Bard, who eventually became Dr. Monica Quartermaine when she married fellow physician Alan Quartermaine (Stuart Damon) and raised a family with him after several weddings and divorces (via Soaps in Depth).

In 2022, Monica is still living in the enormous house the late Alan gave her, which is like a big, beautiful hotel for all the Quartermaines and even their friends. She also runs the hospital the soap is named for while frequently babysitting her many grandchildren and doing her best to keep the peace with her bickering family. Through it all, Charleson has brought Monica to life and marked the occasion of her 41st anniversary on "GH" with a tweet remembering that music legend Elvis Presley passed away the same day the iconic Monica Q was born, writing, "41 years ago today, Elvis Presley died and I started on GH. Little did I know something so good could come out of such a sad day."