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Series VPRS 7680
Register of Patients
About this Series Related Series Accessing the records in this Series
Date Range: Series 1871 - 1966
  Series in Custody 1871 - 1966
  Contents 1871 - 1966
Public Access: Part Open
Location: North Melbourne
Format of Records: Physical
 
Agency which created this SeriesAgency which created this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
1871 - 1966 Kew (Asylum 1871-1905; Hospital for the Insane 1905-1934; Mental Hospital 1934-c.1970's; Mental/Psychiatric Hospital c.1970's-1988) VA 2840
Agency currently responsible for this SeriesAgency currently responsible for this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
2009 - cont Department of Health III VA 4921
Description of this SeriesDescription of this Series
  • How to use the Records
    This series has been digitised and is available online. Access to the digitised records is available via the physical records details pages.

    Consult the Consignment Details List and order in the volumes covering the time period of interest. Each volume of this register contains an index by patient name which gives a reference to the number of the page of that volume upon which the patient's entry will be found.

  • Function / Content
    Register of Patients

    From at least 1845 and the proclamation of An Act for the Regulation of the Care and Treatment of Lunatics (8 & 9 Vic c.100), public asylums and licensed houses were required to maintain a Register of Patients. Initially the register maintained by licensed houses was officially known as the Book of Admissions. In some institutions the Register was also known as an Admissions Register or as an Admission and Discharge Register and these terms were sometimes stamped on the volumes.

    Immediately upon the admission of a person to an asylum, the clerk of the asylum was required to make an entry in the Register of Patients. Details recorded included:

    - patient's name
    - date of admission
    - admission number
    - date of last previous admission
    - age
    - marital status
    - occupation
    - previous place of abode
    - religion, and
    - once examined by a medical officer, the form of mental disorder and state of physical health.

    Further details were entered in the register on the death, transfer or discharge of a patient. Institutions were also required to maintain a separate Register of Discharges, Removals and Deaths, usually known as a Discharge Register.

    The format of the Register of Patients which was specified in a schedule to the Lunacy Statute and succeeding legislation, changed little until the proclamation of the Mental Health Act 1959 in 1962.

    The record then became officially known as the Register of Patients and Discharge Register and included information about the types of admission. The following five types of admission were specified under sections 41 to 49 of the Mental Health Act 1959.

    - Voluntary Boarders (V) were those who entered the hospital at their own request or, if under the age of 16 at the request of a parent or guardian and on the opinion of a medical practitioner.

    - Recommended (R) and Approved (A) Patients. A person could be admitted upon the recommendation set out in a prescribed form, of a medical practitioner who had examined the person. As soon as possible after admission the superintendent of the hospital was required to examine the patient and either approve the recommended admission or discharge the patient.

    - Judicial Admissions (J). Upon information provided on oath before a justice that a mentally ill person was not receiving proper care, or could not support himself/herself or had committed an offence, and after examination by two medical practitioners, an order could be made for the person to be admitted to or detained in a mental hospital.

    - Security Patients (S) were those who had been detained in a gaol but were transferred to a mental hospital upon being determined to be mentally ill.

    The post 1962 Registers of Patients also included information previously recorded in a separate Discharge Register, e.g. institution to which the patient was transferred, assigned cause of death where applicable. However some institutions continued to maintain a separate Discharge Register.

    Register of Patients - Kew Asylum

    The admission dates can also be used to locate the entries of patient histories in the Kew Asylum case books, VPRS 7397 (female patients) and VPRS 7398 (male patients).

  • Recordkeeping System
    The volumes were arranged in chronological order by date of admission. There were separate number sequences for male and female patients. Each volume contains an alphabetical index by patient name.

More research resourcesMore research resources
    PROVguide059 Mental Health Records
Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
Controlled SeriesControlled Series
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
1871 - 1924 Admission Warrants, Male and Female Patients VPRS 7456
1905 - 1966 Admission Warrants, Female Patients VPRS 7717
1910 - 1966 Admission Warrants, Male Patients VPRS 7716
Previous SeriesPrevious Series
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Transfer Date Series Title Series Number
Subsequent SeriesSubsequent Series
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Transfer Date Series Title Series Number
- 1966 Register of Patient Admission and Discharge VPRS 7682
List/s of records in this seriesList/s of records in this series
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Consignment Number Contents Date Range Public Access No. of Units
P0001 1871 - 1966 Part Open 16
Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
More research resourcesMore research resources
    PROVguide059 Mental Health Records

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