Prince Henry Hospital was established in 1881 as NSW’s first hospital for infectious diseases. It closed in 2003. The Prince Henry Hospital Nursing and Medical Museum maintain an extensive collection of documents, artefacts and memorabilia related to Prince Henry Hospital, the hundreds of doctors, nurses, patients and support staff associated with it and the general history of medicine in NSW. The Museum is open Sundays (10 am – 3 pm) and Tuesdays (10 am – 2 pm). Guided tours are available. (Please note: The museum is closed all of January 2022)
Established in 1881 by the NSW Government, the Coast Hospital at Little Bay was the first public hospital in Sydney. Renamed Prince Henry Hospital in 1934 to mark the visit of Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester, it became a teaching hospital, training both doctors and nurses, and a centre for research of infectious diseases. In 1988 the NSW government made the decision to consolidate Prince Henry and Prince of Wales Hospitals into a single campus. The last wards closed in 2003. The area has been redeveloped into a residential precinct.
Spanning the 121-year history of Prince Henry Hospital the exhibition, Bravery, Bandages and Bedpans, highlights the huge changes in nursing practise over the 19th and 20th century and illustrates the adversities and adventures experienced by generations of Australian nurses. The online companion to the physical exhibition expands on this story.
The exhibition was launched on May 12, 2020 – the 200th anniversary of the birth of nursing pioneer Florence Nightingale and International Nurses Day – during the Covid-19 pandemic. By presenting information on the trials, tribulations and triumphs of Prince Henry Hospital trained nurses it is hoped visitors will gain a clearer understanding of the vital work done by all medical practitioners.
This exhibition is available to view each Tuesday (10 am-2 pm) and Sunday (10 am-3 pm) at Prince Henry Hospital Museum, Little Bay.
The entry fee is $5.00. Tours for school and community groups can be arranged.
The Prince Henry Hospital Trained Nurses Association, operating the Prince Henry Hospital Nursing and Medical Museum, seek to preserve and maintain our hospital’s historical heritage that began on the headlands of Little Bay in 1881, a place for the sick in a beautiful setting which enhanced the healing process. We seek to continue with the culture of Health care by running programs that educate the community on important healthcare issues, and to embrace all, especially future generations, the elderly and our local Aboriginal community.