An Exhibition of Nursing during war, peace and epidemics
Did you know that there was a Museum of Nursing at the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital at Herston? Neither did I until I stumbled across a small exhibition on the first level of the hospital. In these glass display cabinets the exhibition displays a range of memorabilia that demonstrates changes in nursing as well as the contribution nurses have made to Queensland and the country, particularly through wartime service.
The Museum was previously located in the Lady Lamington Building which was once accommodation for around 200 nurses. It will soon open anew in Building 19, behind the Foundation Office in the hospital grounds.The museum has a large collection of artefacts such as nursing equipment, photographs and uniforms. In the current exhibition I was intrigued to see a display of bedpans throughout the ages as well as enormous and frightening looking syringes and associated contraptions. It all made me rather glad that medicine has moved on and that needles have shrunk in size.
The exhibition pays tribute to the role of nurses during war and in general to their pioneering spirit delivering nursing care in harsh conditions. Highlights include the medals and awards won by various nurses for their contributions.
The exhibition focuses on several nurses for their particular war service such as Ivy Bartz Schulz and others for their reminiscences and funny stories. One such nurse, Attefenia Ould recalls a child who " had his head stuck in a chamber pot and his mother brought him on a tram" to the hospital to be released from this embarrassing situation.