– 150 years of history at The Royal Children’s Hospital –
A concise and chronological record of the rich and diverse 150-year history of The Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH).
Please feel free to scroll through all 150 years or easily filter information via categories or tags.
The historical images have been sourced from the RCH Archives and Collections, unless stated otherwise.
Images have been chosen to illustrate the subject matter and may not necessarily reflect the date of the event.
The RCH has produced such an immense amount of groundbreaking achievements and we cannot assume to have captured them all here.
Do you think an achievement, person, or event is missing? Please send your suggestion to: email@example.com. We hope you enjoy exploring!
Showing Events Tagged with: inpatients
First Nurse for Inpatients
Mrs Bail was the first nurse employed by the hospital. She remained on staff at the hospital until 1878.
Six cots were established for the initial intake of inpatients.
Relocation to 13 Spring Street
The hospital moved to a larger premises with space for 15 beds. The name was changed to Melbourne Hospital for Sick Children.
The Princess May Pavilion
Built on the corner of Pelham and Drummond Street in Carlton, the new building provided much-needed wards for inpatients.
Babies Admitted to the Hospital for the First Time
Later, in 1921, a specialised babies’ ward was established.
The Edward Wilson Pavilion
Built in place of the old Redmond Barry house on Rathdowne Street, the Edward Wilson Pavilion housed 40 surgical and 20 medical beds, as well as two operating theatres.
First Babies’ Ward in Melbourne Opened
A public appeal was held in 1919 to raise funds to build a specialised ward for babies.
Dr Russell Howard
Howard started as a resident and explored a number of different avenues before focusing on paediatric surgery. He was made chief general paediatric surgeon in 1952 and held this position until his retirement in 1970.
Professor Vernon Collins CBE
Appointed as a physician to inpatients, Collins quickly became medical superintendent. As medical director from 1948 to 1959, he worked closely with Lady Ella Latham to reform the hospital in terms of staffing and patient care. He was with the hospital until 1974.
Change to Admissions Criteria
The hospital began to admit all children irrespective of their family’s financial situation.
Daily Visiting Allowances Introduced
Ward subdivisions made way for liberalisation of visiting rules and in his role as medical director, Professor Vernon Collins CBE introduced daily visiting allowances.
Television Broadcasting in Australia Commenced
September 16th, 1956
Australian broadcasting began and television sets were placed in the wards for the patients’ entertainment.
The Royal Children’s Hospital School
The school was first established as an annex to The Children's Orthopaedic Hospital. When the long-term patients moved to Parkville in 1971, the school did, too. Now known as the RCH Education Institute, the department keeps patients connected to learning.
Establishment of the Adolescent Ward
This allowed children over age 14 to receive treatment at the hospital.