Maws & Bairns: Maternal & Child Health in Tayside

Hospital Provision

the photo of Maternity department at Dundee Royal Infirmary, c.1910sIn 1899, the Caird Maternity and Gynaecology Wards (see photo, left and below) were opened at Dundee Royal Infirmary. These were replaced by the Sharp Maternity building in 1930, by which time only women expecting their first babies were admitted there unless complications were anticipated.‌

 Maryfield ‌Hospital for the sick poor had a single maternity room when it opened in 1893, but by the 1960s it boasted a thriving maternity and paediatric service, which subsequently moved to Ninewells in 1974.

Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Glasgow had all opened Royal Hospitals for Sick Children by 1882, but Tayside children were cared for in the regional general hospitals. At Dundee Royal Infirmary, the first Ward for Children appeared in 1883, two others following in 1915 and 1927. Tayside Children’s Hospital eventually opened at Ninewells in 2006.

photo of Red Cross Auxiliary HospitalDundee Infant Hospital was used mainly for treating nutritional disorders that required more care than the (usually working) mother could provide. It opened originally in 1916 at Windsor Street, moving in 1919 to the Lodge in Broughty Ferry. This building was originally given by the Don family in memory of the father and two sons who died during the Great War, to be used as a Red Cross Auxiliary Hospital (see picture, left). In 1965, it became the Dundee Limb Fitting Centre.

Images courtesy of Private Collection and Tayside Medical History Museum

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