Loving Kiss From A Big Brother

Child and Adolescent Health Service

Celebrating 108 years


Princess Margaret Hospital


PMH 1970 - 1989


Parents are now encouraged to participate in the care of their babies and to take responsibility for the decisions regarding treatment, in consultation with staff. This was a major turnaround from the days when parents were shielded from possible death and all management was left solely to the doctors.

During the late 1970s, the hospital extended its building program. Redevelopment involved remodelling old buildings while others were demolished.

The original outpatients building came under close scrutiny. Hospital administration, printing service and the Women’s Auxiliary had all occupied the building up to this point.

1970 Annual Report
1970 Annual Report

WA community groups who endowed cots in the early 1900s such as the Commercial Traveller’s Association, the 10th Light Horse Association and Members of the Beekeepers’ Section of Primary Industries Association continue to contribute financially to the hospital.


An adolescent activities centre is established to provide a place for teenagers to meet in the hospital.

Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) finds a permanent home with much improved facilities under the management of Dr Alan Duncan and Dr Paul Swan.

Half of all admissions to PMH are emergencies.

A resource centre for the Child Accident Prevention Foundation opens in Hamilton Street, to provide the community with information and advice to help keep children safe in the home.

The PMH Volunteers have grown to a network of 175 workers who support staff in a number of areas throughout the hospital. From managing the kiosk, helping in the school room and being ‘ward friends’, to assisting the play leaders and perhaps their biggest achievement to date, funding and running the Friendship Room.


HRH Princess Margaret, after whom the hospital is named, visits PMH.

PMH’s first full-time neonatal physician Dr Patrick Pemberton is appointed.


An additional storey is added to the Hay Street Building to cope with demand.


The first dedicated Neonatal Intensive Care Unit opens to treat preterm and newborn babies.


The PMH Auxilliary workers begin in a supportive role in the outpatients department, led by PMH Board member Jean Oldham.


Princess Margaret Hospital is declared a public hospital, attracting government funding. It now boasts the facilities and expertise to treat children with more complex conditions than ever before.

The Board of Subscribers continue to work within and fundraise for the hospital.

The State Child Development Centre opens in Rheola Street, West Perth. There are now 15 child development centres throughout the Perth metropolitan area.

The enuresis clinic opens with a nurse-led treatment program.


The renal unit is established with six transplants performed this year.


The nurses’ quarters on Roberts Road close and over the years are remodelled and converted to house administrative offices, the PMH Library, MacDonald Lecture Theatre and the University of Paediatrics.

The special needs of adolescents begin to be addressed. Dr Patricia Ryan starts advocating the need for a separate adolescent unit.


Stage one of the hospital’s redevelopment (Charles Moore Building) is completed with bright and vibrant colours at the entrance of the hospital.

Former Matron Judy Butt (later Lady Court) establishes the PMH Archives.

Dr Suzanne Robertson is appointed Head of Adolescent Services, providing community health services specifically for teenagers.


The first dedicated paediatric Oncology Ward in Western Australia is established.

Radio Lollipop begins at PMH. Lollipop volunteers visit wards, play with children and operate a radio station in the hospital that provides fun and entertainment through music, stories, games and competitions.

The last intake of PMH hospital based trained nurses begin. They finish their training in 1988.


The Charles Moore building opens. The intensive care unit and paediatric intensive care unit move to permanent locations with improved facilities.

HRH Princess Anne opens the Charles Moore Building.

Uncomplicated cardiac surgery is now performed at PMH instead of Royal Perth Hospital, bringing a significant drop in mortality.


The PMH volunteer-run Friendship Room opens on Level 7, to cater for parents awaiting their child’s return from theatre.


PMH becomes a fully fledged Children’s Hospital Medical Centre partnering with the WA Research Institute of Child Health, UWA Department of Paediatrics, the Child Accident Prevention Foundation of Australia and the Children’s Hospital Childcare Centre.

Matron Judy Butt retires after more than 30 years in the position.

Princess Margaret visit - 1972
Princess Margaret visit - 1972
Dr Patrick Pemberton
Dr Patrick Pemberton
Neonates Facility - 1980
Neonates Facility - 1980
Main entrance - 1983
Main entrance - 1983
PMH Hay Street
PMH Hay Street
Radio Lollipop - 1980s
Radio Lollipop - 1980s
Matron Judy Butt
Matron Judy Butt
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