The Museum of Health Care at Kingston: its Role in the Preservation of the Legacy of Health Care in Canada


  • James A. Low Executive Director, Museum of Health Care at Kingston; Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Queen’s University


Museum , Ann Baillie Bulding, Collection, Public programs


Beginning in the 16th  century, museums were an important resource for medical education. By the mid 20th  century, however, the perceived educational value of museum collections declined and museums adopted the strategy of turning collections into publicly accessible medical history. The Museum of Health Care at Kingston, governed by a Board of Directors, began in 1991. The collection reflective of health care in Canada is  available as a research resource through the Museum website and Artefacts Canada. The Museum communicates the history and science of health and health care as it has occurred in Canada to the general public by means of special events, exhibits and educational programs. The outstanding challenge for the Museum, as a not-for-profit institution, is to meet the increasing demands of the annual operating budget and to establish an Endowment Fund to assure long-term financial stability of the Museum.