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Early Days

Who was admitted to Stobhill?

Stobhill Hospital only treated certain illnesses. Fever hospitals dealt with infectious diseases.

Casualties went to voluntary hospitals. Patients at Stobhill were often in the last stages of diseases like tuberculosis (TB) or other illnesses brought on by poor living and working conditions. Some also suffered from alcoholism or syphilis.

Most common illnesses at Stobhilll between May 1904 and Nov 1904

Illness

No of patients

Tuberculosis (TB)

336

Senile decay

215

Bronchitis

121

Cardiac problems

81

Paralysis

68

Most common causes of death at Stobhill between May 1904 and Nov 1904

Cause of death

No of patients

Tuberculosis (TB)

79

Senile decay

55

Cardiac problems

23

Nervous system problems

18

Bronchitis

5

Stobhill was more than a hospital. Ten wards were for children taken into care by the Parish Council (like a children’s home today). A school was built nearby. There were four long-stay wards where the ‘old, feeble, helpless and blind’ were cared for until they passed on.

Life for the patients

Dr Core, the Medical Superintendent, examined patients on arrival. They were given blue hospital clothes. Forbidden items, such as matches, alcohol or food, were removed. A record card was made out for each patient, red for Catholics and white for Protestants.

Wards were single-sex. Men and women were not supposed to mix. Patients had prayers twice a day and Church on Sundays. If they were well enough they helped out around the hospital. Women did cleaning and sewing. Epileptics and TB patients did gardening. The hospital employed two policemen to enforce rules and stop patients from running away or going to the pub. But there were treats too. The healthiest patients had an annual holiday in Largs. Others had daytrips to local villages, with pocket money for afternoon tea. Men were issued with a weekly ration of tobacco.

The Store Room, 1931.

A ward from the early days.