History

History

In 1862 the University of Melbourne established the first medical school to teach undergraduate medicine in the southern dominions of the British Empire.  By 1870, the first Melbourne Hospital for Sick Children (later The Children's Hospital) opened in Carlton with six beds.  In 1900 the University of Melbourne invited the Children's Hospital to appoint a staff member to join the Faculty of Medicine and the Hospital selected Dr William Snowball.  

Paediatrics began to emerge as a medical discipline in Victoria from beneath the umbrella of mothers and children's health as the twentieth century progressed.  It was accompanied by a drive for professional excellence.  In the 1940's and 50's the University and the now named Royal Children's Hospital (RCH) started to work more closely.  A fulltime Clinical Supervisor was appointed to oversee undergraduate teaching and the hospital's Clinical Research Unit requested that the University recognise it.  An agreement between the University of Melbourne and the Children's Hospital was ratified.  

In 1959, the first chair of paediatrics (Stevenson Chair in Child Health) was created following a donation from Mrs Hilda Stevenson, VicePresident of the Children's Hospital Board of Management.  

Thus the formal relationship between the University and Hospital extends back over 100 years and over time the Hospital slowly changed from being a charity hospital to a teaching hospital with a very strong research profile.  The Board of Research (established in 1945), developed into the RCH Research Foundation and subsequently the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute (MCRI) in 1999.  Both the University and the Hospital have benefited greatly from this century old association.  

Throughout that time the RCH has been at the national forefront of paediatrics.  Distinguishing features have been the breadth and depth of clinical and research activities, ranging from basic science to extensive psychological and clinical based research.  The campus was one of the first to develop a paediatric research institute.  

Today the Department of Paediatrics thrives under the tri partnership between University of Melbourne, Murdoch Research Institute and Royal Children's Hospital.  

Our shared culture is that of collaborative innovation.  Through science we discover new ways to keep children well, and heal those who are not.  Through direct, bedside care we translate this knowledge into better health outcomes and happier lives.  And through education and training we embed our knowledge, and the importance of discovery, in the next generation of paediatric specialists.

Key dates in the evolution of a University of Melbourne Department of Paediatrics

Year  
1862 University of Melbourne establishes a medical school with an intake of three students, becoming it the first University in the southern dominions of the British Empire to teach undergraduate medicine.
1867 University of Melbourne appoints a lecturer in obstetrics and diseases of children at the Lying-in Hospital (later the Women's Hospital).
1870 Melbourne Hospital for Sick Children (later Children's Hospital) opens in Carlton with six beds.
1882 Medical students receive Lectures in Diseases of Children at the Hospital for Sick Children for the first time.
1900 University of Melbourne invites the Children's Hospital to appoint a staff member to join the Faculty of Medicine and the Hospital selects Dr William Snowball.
1911 Medical students are required for the first time to attend the Children's Hospital for teaching in diseases of children or risk failure.
1921-29  University of Melbourne Professor of Anatomy, Richard Berry, appointed honorary psychometrician to the Children's Hospital.
1948 University suggests the Hospital appoints a full-time Clinical Supervisor to oversee undergraduate teaching.
1949 University suggests the Hospital appoints a full-time Clinical Supervisor to oversee undergraduate teaching.

The Hospital's Clinical Research Unit (which became operational in 1948) requests that the University recognise it.
1950 Dr Bob Southby appointed Lecturer in Diseases of Children at the Hospital, an appointment paid for by the University for the first time.
1951 University passes Regulations allowing students to carry out research for postgraduate degrees at the Hospital.
1952 Agreement between the University of Melbourne and the Children's Hospital is ratified.

Faculty of Medicine agrees to extend student's term of attendance at the Hospital from two to three months.
1953 The Hospital becomes the Royal Children's Hospital and the University classifies the Hospital as a Special Training Hospital
1959 Creation of University of Melbourne Stevenson Chair in Child Health following a donation from Mrs Hilda Stevenson, Vice-President of the Children's Hospital Board of Management.
1965 [Stevenson] Chair in Child Health re-named [Stevenson] Chair in Paediatrics.
1983 Chair in Paediatric Research established
1984 Chair in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry established.
1988 Chair in Paediatric Orthopaedic Surgery established.
1991 Chair in Adolescent Health established.
1994 Chairs in Paediatric Surgery, Child and Adolescent Psychology, Paediatric Haematology and Oncology, and of Community Child Health established.
1995 Chair in Paediatric Critical Care and Research Chair in Genetics established.
2007  Establishment of the Campus Council to enhance and advance collaborations between the Campus Partners.
2009 Establishment of the Royal Children's Hospital Academic Centre (in which the Department of Paediatrics is incorporated).
2011 Move to our new $1.1 billion dollar home (our current site) which was officially opened by the Her Majesty the Queen in October.
2013

Last MBBS and first Doctor of Medicine student cohorts complete their Child and Adolescent Health Placement rotation at the Royal Children's Hospital

The McKeon 'Strategic Review of Health and Medical Research in Australia' profiled The Children's as the only stand alone paediatric campus in Australia following the model of integrated research, clinical care and tertiary education seen at leading US, UK and Canadian sites, stating this "ensured The Children's remains at the forefront of research and translation" and enabled it "to be a major national and international contributor of knowledge leading to improved child health".

The Melbourne Children's (representing the campus partnership) receives the Melbourne Award for 'Contribution to profile by a corporation'.

2014 The Royal Children's Hospital Academic Centre renamed the Melbourne Children's Academic Centre