Cherry Ames, Student Nurse [Novel] (From the Collection #18)

The Story Cherry Ames is the central character in a series of 27 mystery novels with hospital settings published by Grosset & Dunlap between 1943 and 1968. Helen Wells (1910-1986) wrote volumes 1-7 and 17-27, and Julie Campbell Tatham (1908-1999), wrote volumes 8-16. During the Second World War, the series encouraged girls to become nurses … More Cherry Ames, Student Nurse [Novel] (From the Collection #18)

Creating an Outdoor Walking Tour

This summer, I had the opportunity to complete a thorough revamp of the Outdoor Tour program that the Museum has offered for many years. It was a long and tedious but ultimately rewarding process. With this in mind, I thought it might be helpful or interesting to others to explain how I went about the project to transform a few abstract ideas into a polished Museum product, ready for the public to enjoy for years to come. … More Creating an Outdoor Walking Tour

The Wild and Wacky World of Drug Advertisements

Back in the late 1800s, a time where saying yes to drugs might have actually been encouraged, patent medicines promised wild and wonderful cures. These medicines, as opposed to those prescribed by a doctor, were loosely regulated; leading to extravagant claims and dangerous, often unlisted, ingredients. From cure-alls to cough syrup, these medicines promised to treat a variety of ailments for those who could not afford a private doctor’s visit, although they would often do more harm than good. … More The Wild and Wacky World of Drug Advertisements

Electroconvulsive Therapy: Controversial, even at Conception

On March 9, 2020, Justice Minister David Lametti introduced Bill C-8, which would amend Canada’s Criminal Code to ban Conversion Therapy. With this ban being proposed in the House of Commons, it is important to understand the history of Conversion Therapy, as well as how electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) has played a key role in the practice. … More Electroconvulsive Therapy: Controversial, even at Conception

Teacher Candidates and Museum Placements: Something Different (in a Good Way)

The following was written by Justin Ao, a Queen’s Education Program Placement Student, who was with the Museum of Health Care during March 2020. Education as an institution has evolved through the years – not only what we teach, but how and why we teach is drastically different from mere decades ago. As a Queen’s … More Teacher Candidates and Museum Placements: Something Different (in a Good Way)

A Necessary Public Service to Uphold: Kingston General Hospital and the Hospital Funding Crisis of 1867

The loss of KGH’s annual grant from the newly formed government in 1867 not only greatly impacted the hospital, but the Kingston community as well. Recognizing the growing value and importance of the hospital to the community, KGH’s Board of Governors and members of the community rallied to save the hospital at this critical juncture in the history of health care in Canada, when the idea of supporting public hospitals was still in question. … More A Necessary Public Service to Uphold: Kingston General Hospital and the Hospital Funding Crisis of 1867

Laudanum: Freedom from Pain for the Price of Addiction

On Canada Day, the Museum of Health Care unveiled a new exhibit entitled “A Stubborn Illness” about the health of Sir John A. Macdonald and his family. When I first toured the gallery I was struck by the intriguing medicine prescribed to Sir John A. Macdonald’s first wife, Isabella Clark. Visitors seemed to share my sentiment and several have inquired why laudanum is no longer a popular treatment. Further investigation of laudanum and Isabella’s relationship with it reveals that though the drug provided pain relief, its side effects and risks far outweighed its benefits. … More Laudanum: Freedom from Pain for the Price of Addiction