The Royal Women's Hospital, located in the Melbourne suburb of Parkville, is Australia's largest specialist women's hospital, offering a full range of services in maternity, gynaecology, neonatal care and women's health. It also offers complementary services such as social work, physiotherapy and pastoral care. Specialist clinics in Infertility and Endometriosis are also available. It is a major teaching hospital of over 200 beds with links to the University of Melbourne and La Trobe University. Co-located in the same building is the Frances Perry Private Hospital, a 69 bed private hospital for women.
The hospital was established at Eastern Hill by doctors Richard Tracy and John Maund on 19 August 1856 as a place where under-privileged women could give birth with proper medical attention. The doctors were assisted by a group of women led by Mrs Frances Perry, the wife of the Bishop of Melbourne. The original title for the hospital was the Melbourne Lying-in Hospital and Infirmary for Diseases Peculiar to Women and Children. In 1858 it was relocated to a site in Carlton, which spanned the block between Swanston and Cardigan Streets and Grattan and Faraday Streets. In March 1884, the hospital was renamed The Hospital for Women, with the "Royal" title being conferred on 6 September 1954.
In 2005, then Victorian Premier Steve Bracks and Health Minister Bronwyn Pike announced a major redevelopment and relocation of the Royal Women's Hospital and Frances Perry Private Hospital next to the Royal Melbourne Hospital on the corner of Grattan Street and Flemington Road in Parkville. The new building and facilities (seen here), built by Baulderstone, were opened on 13th of June, 2008. The new building cost the Victorian Government $250 million dollars, and has the capacity for 6000 births per year.
Support from the Harold Mitchell Foundation enabled the hospital to commission an impressive sculpture commemorating the central role of the Women’s in the lives of Victorian families. The sculpture, by renowned Melbourne artist, Michael Meszaros, is situated prominently at the front entrance of the new hospital.
This post is part of the Signs, Signs meme.