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150 Years of Healthcare, Innovation, Leadership

It’s our Sesquicentennial!

  • 1872 – Winnipeg General Hospital (WGH) was established.
  • 1973 – WGH merged with Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg and The Manitoba Rehabilitation Hospital–D.A. Stewart Centre (Respiratory Hospital) to become Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg (HSC).

The establishment of WGH and then HSC were major milestones that have shaped healthcare in Manitoba and influenced healthcare advances throughout Canada and the world.

The citizens of 1872 Winnipeg volunteered their efforts to establish a much-needed hospital. Thanks to the generosity of dozens of benefactors, new buildings were erected. After struggling to find a permanent location, WGH occupied the first structure on its permanent site in 1875. The early buildings were the nucleus of an area in the heart of Winnipeg that eventually became a campus for healthcare. Dedicated doctors, nurses, and other caregivers offered healing and hope. Specialized services emerged, training institutions were founded, and older structures were replaced by more modern facilities.

In 1973 HSC was established on this foundation of 100 years of healthcare leadership and innovation. HSC has since grown to be one of the largest tertiary healthcare facilities in Canada – a referral, teaching and research institution serving residents of Manitoba, Northwestern Ontario, and Nunavut. Today, HSC is Manitoba’s provincial centre for trauma, transplants, burns, neurosciences, complex cancer care, and hospital-based pediatric care. Dedicated staff, volunteers and benefactors continue to support and grow services at the hospital to meet the growing and evolving healthcare needs of our populations.

In 2000, HSC amalgamated with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) and became an operating division of the WRHA. On April 5, 2019, HSC Winnipeg transitioned from WRHA to Shared Health to become a Shared Health facility.

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A Foundation of Innovation 1872 – 1972

The Founding of the Winnipeg General Hospital

In a town that aspired to become a great city, the citizens of 1872 Winnipeg volunteered their efforts to establish a much-needed hospital. Initially, without a home to call its own, the little hospital struggled to find a permanent location. Then, thanks to the generosity of dozens of benefactors, new buildings were erected. Dedicated doctors, nurses, and other caregivers offered healing and hope, and specialized services emerged.

A Hospital for Children

The determination of a dedicated nurse resulted in the establishment of a second hospital in Winnipeg. Annie Bond recognized the need for a facility specializing in care for the children of the community, and in 1909 the Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg was opened.

Benefactors and Volunteers

Winnipeg General Hospital and the Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg were established as a result of the efforts of public-spirited members of the community who contributed their resources and time. The continued involvement of volunteers enabled the institutions to expand their services to the community.

The Staff of the Winnipeg General Hospital

In the very early days, a small but dedicated group of staff members took on the formidable task of looking after the healthcare needs of the community. As the numbers of patients grew and new buildings were erected, the staff expanded and became more diversified.

Services for Patients

Even in their very early stages, both Winnipeg General and Children’s Hospitals prioritized the patients’ needs and were determined to provide a range of services to patients and their families.

Dealing with Challenge

Over the decades, healthcare workers faced a wide range of challenges as they carried out their mission. They contended with epidemics, natural disasters, war, and economic hardships.

Learning & Discovery

As teaching hospitals, the Winnipeg General Hospital and the Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg provided and assisted with a range of training programs. As institutions dedicated to continual improvement, they encouraged and facilitated the work of researchers.

A Centre of Innovation 1973 – 2022

A Blending of Proud Traditions

The establishment in 1973 of Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg (HSC) was a major milestone in the history of healthcare in Manitoba. The new organization resulted from the amalgamation of several healthcare institutions, each with its own tradition of excellence, located in the heart of Winnipeg. Since then, HSC has become one of the largest tertiary care facilities in Canada, evolving into a referral, teaching, and research institution to serve residents of Manitoba, Northwestern Ontario, and Nunavut. HSC is a major centre for complex health problems; the designated trauma facility for Manitoba; and the only location in the province for transplants, neurosurgery, burn care, and most hospital-based pediatric care.

Technology for the Future

Some of the most advanced tools in medical science are used at Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg (HSC). Non-invasive surgery is achieved through the use of gamma knives, and advanced imaging techniques provide invaluable insights into the human body. The installation of a cyclotron, construction of a research institute, and the first intraoperative MRI suite in Canada have enhanced HSC’s scope in healthcare, neurosciences, and research.

Benefactors and Volunteers

Just as public-spirited members of the community had been instrumental in founding the institutions that joined together to become Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg (HSC), the continued support of the public is essential to the ongoing ability of the institution to serve the community. Organizations and individuals, some with decades of service, others much more recent, have become indispensable supporters of HSC.

Dedicated Staff: Hands that Heal

The success of Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg (HSC) in meeting the needs of its patients is dependent on the skills and dedication of its staff. Throughout its history, HSC, like the institutions that combined to establish it, has been fortunate to have a large and diverse staff who daily provide care and hope to the populations of Manitoba.

A Culture of Caring

Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg (HSC) provides a range of services to meet the physical, psychosocial, emotional, mental and spiritual health needs of people of all ages. Programs and services, especially for underserved populations, are underpinned by the culture of caring and inclusion established by HSC’s founding institutions.

Leaders in Surgery

Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg (HSC) has established a reputation for its specialized surgical services. In addition to serving as the primary location for neurosurgery and transplants, HSC is home to high-skilled surgeons and state-of-the-art equipment for a number of other surgical procedures.

Learning & Discovery

Research and innovation have been priorities for Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg (HSC) and its founding institutions since the earliest stages of their history. In conjunction with the University of Manitoba’s Faculty of Medicine, researchers involved with HSC have made many important contributions to medical science. HSC is committed to providing leadership in the development and dissemination of new knowledge through basic science, clinical research, and health service research.

Building for the Future

Building for the Future

Health Sciences Centre Winnipeg (HSC) is home to some of the most advanced healthcare and research buildings in Canada. Additionally, environmental stewardship and energy management features are purpose built into new facilities and actively retrofitted into existing structures. The Institute of Advanced Medicine and the Ann Thomas Building enable skilled clinicians and scientists to provide the best of care and conduct groundbreaking research. The Diagnostic Centre of Excellence – including the first hospital heliport in Manitoba – and creation of the Women’s Hospital are all examples of the creative vision that charts the future of HSC.

HSC Winnipeg Women’s Hospital video tour

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