A brief history of healthcare provision in London


In 1897 MAB acquired new responsibilities in providing healthcare for pauper children, namely those suffering from eye, skin or scalp disease, the mentally handicapped, the chronically sick requiring long-term nursing, and convalescents.  A Children's Committee was formed, which established various convalescent hospitals, hospital-schools for long-stay patients and sanatoria outside London and by the sea.

The White Oak Hospital in Swanley opened in 1903 for the treatment of children with trachoma and other eye diseases, and High Wood Hospital in Brentwood in 1904 (later used for TB patients).  For the treatment of ringworm, a fungal infection of the scalp and other parts of the body, the Downs School in Sutton was acquired.  In 1914 these children were transferred to the Goldie Leigh Homes and the Downs School became a TB sanatorium.

In 1909 a new fever hospital had been built at Carshalton, but increasing demand for child accommodation led to its being given to the Children's Committee for use as a general hospital for children.  Originally named the Southern Hospital, it became Queen Mary's Hospital for Children, mainly treating those with non-pulmonary tuberculosis and rheumatic fever.

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Powell A 1930 The Metropolitan Asylums Board and Its Work 1867-1930.  London, Metropolitan Asylums Board.
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