2. We Take A Walk Through The Hospital (College St) – 1946

Author Unknown.  An article that appeared in the “Alumnae News“, 1946

Sketch of 67 College St

Those of you who have been away from the hospital for a few years, or even for a few months, would probably like to take a trip around the old homestead, and see a few of the changes.  (Note: Author refers to staff returning from overseas after the War)

Here we are at the switchboard, which has been enlarged and requires a third operator.  On being interviewed, Mrs. Groves emphasized the handicaps under which they had been working and their pleasure in the added equipment.  She feels that it will soon be possible for the operators to be consistently pleasant and efficient in serving the hospital.  Another improvement is the installation of a light system here for the staff doctors, so that now you have an answer to that question “Is there a doctor in the house?”  We also found out that if you call Ad. 9401, and get a busy signal, it means that 22 “trunks” or lines into the hospital, are busy.

From the front door we can see 82, 84 and 86 College Street — three new residences which have been added to H.S.C. in the last two years.  86 College, just by way of getting our bearings, used to be Dr. Goldie’s office.

All that the Operating Room could find in the way of a change was an improvement in the linen situation, and an almost complete change of the nursing staff.  The students look forward with enthusiasm to their experience in this department.  Miss Balcom, who is in charge, is a graduate of the Toronto General Hospital, and was with the R.C.A.M.C. with the 15th General in Africa and Italy during World War II and was honoured with the A.R.R.C. for her services in charge of the O.R. during that period.

Baby Surgical has changed remarkably since the nursery school started.  There is an article elsewhere in this issue about this but we can’t resist pointing out here and now, that the days of gathering up an armful of draw sheets and changing every bed in the long ward are over.  And can you imagine all the children settled for the night at six?

Along the hall is one of the offices of the Visual Education Department, which is still in its experimental stages.  Its chief purpose is to provide illustrative material for research and teaching needs, and includes photographs, movies, with or without animated drawings, sketches of operative procedures or pathological conditions and so on.  Any service may call on the staff of this department (which is composed of an artist and photographer and secretary) for a permanent visual record to be made of some aspect of their work.

We are passing Ward J which has just been redecorated in a very delicate shade of green.

Miss Martin, in charge of the Private Floor, practically refused to be interviewed as she was contemplating doing some involved research on the advisability vs. the possibility of using double-decker beds for the tonsillectomy patients, thus stretching the bed capacity even further!

Boys’ surgical, in Mrs. Clifford’s charge, is as lively as ever.  Room #6 is now being used for clean surgical infants, and #8 seems to be more or less reserved for chest surgery and the odd blue baby.

Miss Bernardo has returned from the Crippled Children’s Society and is again in charge of Girls’ surgical.  We understand that various ideas for the new hospital are to be tried out on this ward.

That ‘nice cream colour’ which has long been the stand-by of the painters, has given way to delicate pastel shades wherever recent re-decorating is evident.  Boys’ and Girls’ Medical wards have been painted a soft green with grey and white corridors.  The whole effect is light and cheerful.  These wards have been divided into three services with Dr. Boyd, Dr. J. Keith, and Dr. Chute each in charge of one of the services.  Dr. Silverthorne is the Consulting Physician, and all problems of administration are referred to him, and he is also the consultant for the interns.  We have heard – via the grapevine – that special certificates of durability and resiliency, are to be given to head nurses who survive past a reasonable period on these wards.  They live through staff rounds every day now, as well as meeting the demands of three staff doctors, five interns, and the general ward situations of the day.

The X-Ray Department presents a triumph of mind over matter, for they have built a series of offices right out of nowhere!  We will give you a hint how this was done by telling you that the view from the roof of the nurses’ residence now includes still another little box-like affair stuck on to the back of the hospital.  These offices are definitely superior and were planned for Dr. Munn, the Radiologist, his assistant, the chief Surgeon and the Consulting Physicians and include room for the secretaries too.  New x-ray equipment has been installed in Dr. Rolph’s old office.  Dr. Rolph retired last fall.  We are glad to see him again when he visits the children from time to time, and we suspect that he slips them the occasional candy!

A visit to the store will show that Mr. Fry is still looking after our supplies.  Mr. Fry has been here for 55 years and now feels better than ever.  Mrs. Graham in the Dispensary, says that it is because she talked him into taking extra vitamins this winter.  Talking of the dispensary, Archie has retired after 36 years with the hospital.

We’d like to tell you that the O.P.D. has been installed in spacious quarters, but it just isn’t so.  However it is being redecorated, and also boasts of an appointment system, as you’ll be reading about elsewhere in this magazine.  Miss Drury, who has been in the orthopaedic department for 26 years, has retired.

The Infant Ward cubicles have been painted a delicate peachy pink and a pale blue, with halls of white and grey.  The ward has been divided into three units, with a head nurse in charge of each.  There are many advantages to these smaller units, a minor one being that the nurse is saved frantic trips around the ward looking for a certain ‘blue’ or ‘red’ baby while a staff doctor stands impatiently waving his stethoscope.  The large cubicles are partitioned off between each cot.

Anybody here will be glad to show off their new equipment to you, such as the Emerson Resuscitator or the Armstrong Incubators.

The Infectious Ward is as functional in design as ever, but certainly far prettier.  It also has been redecorated this winter and the cubicles painted in a light blue with the occasional pink one, and the halls are in ivory.

As we walk about we notice a number of our graduates who have returned to help us out.  Mrs. Cunningham ‘ 15, Miss O’Hara ’09, and Mrs. Fullerton ’06, have been particularly faithful.

The tunnel may bring forth a sigh of relief from you for no change here – trucks, empty beds, and the T.S.O. still shutting the locker doors.  However a peek inside the laundry will show you some new equipment, and it is now less essential to know the right people to obtain a few draw sheets.

Here you are – back at the front door.  Goodbye! And we will see you at the next Alumnae Meeting won’t we?