Balmain Hospital is a community-based healthcare facility that has been caring for local people since 1885.
It is dedicated to Aged Care, Rehabilitation and General Practice. The original hospital, known as Balmain Cottage Hospital was opened on 10 August 1885 and was located behind the present Court House on Darling Street and consisted of four beds. During its first year of operations the hospital treated a total of 39 patients.
In 1887, the hospital moved to its current location, and became known as the Balmain District Hospital and had services such as operating theatres, a central sterilising department, Children's Ward, Labour Ward, Nursery, Intensive Care Unit, Orthopaedic Unit and a 24 hour casualty service.
Throughout the 1920s and 1930s, the hospital was expanded further to include the Alfred Reed Wing, which was at times utilised as a women's and children's maternity unit. At different points throughout the hospitals' history, both John Beasley Ward and the current Transitional Care Unit were converted to temporary maternity units. The last baby born at the maternity hospital was on 6 November, 1981.
On the current site of the main clinical hospital wing was Thornton House. This building was completed in 1943 as a four-storey building encompassing Mort's Docks, John Beasley Ward and Lever Ward. Mort's Dock, currently known as the Transitional Care Unit, is named after Mort's Dock and Engineering Co Ltd., which throughout the 20th Century supported ongoing maintenance and construction works of Balmain Hospital, including the boiler house and iconic chimney stack.
In 1974, Thornton House was redeveloped further to include Wakefield Ward and a Casualty Department. Throughout the 1990s, the hospital had some further changes to some infrastructure and models of care shifting to the provision of sub-acute aged care, rehabilitation and General Practice as it is today.
Today, the original Balmain Hospital Main Building is heritage listed on the NSW Heritage Register and is used for administrative and support staff.