King George Hospital of Vishakhapatnam, AP - a heritage hospital that began with a dispensary started by EIC

 The city of  Visakhapatnam  with its strategic natural harbor attracted the attention of the Dutch East India company and also British East India company and ithe trade competition the british came out victorious. There are many historical sites as well as heritage sites in this area  and INTACH- Vizag chapter is taking serious steps to  save and protect them fr the posterity and to maintain cultural and historical connectivity. KGH -King George Hospital is one among them in the older part of the city.  

 The King George Hospital (KGH) which had a humble beginning in 1845 has been a catering to the heath care of the people of the coastal area including part of Odisha since its inception of  a new hospital  in 1923 . Now affiliated with  the Andhra Medical College, this government hospital is equipped with the latest modern medical equipments and well-trained medical staff and nurses.  This year it is completing 100th year. 

king George hospital, Vishakhapatnam

The provincial government at Madras in 1841  sanctioned dispensaries in the towns of the present-day Tiruchirappalli Madurai, Machilipatnam, Bellary and kadapaon on experimental basis. Their contention was the new  dispensaries would be sanctioned  only after they were satisfied with their utility,function and response from the natives.  

The English mercantile trading company -EIC was more focussed on the exploitation of natural resources and land grabbing  than in the welfare of the natives. EIC official were of the the opinion that the medical care of the natives was not their concern. However, they ran the hospitals and dispensaries only for the Europeans and company workers. They were called Garrison hospitals run by the army doctors; there used to be a Garrison Hospital in the old town of Visakhapatnam. The dispensaries that were later established for natives were called civil dispensaries.

Opened in 1845 in a rental building,it was located in a place between  Turner's choultry and dolphin's hotel.  The provisional govt. in Madras  bore all the expenses medicine, equipments, etc.
The main building is a heritage structure, built around 1845 on a 35-acre land donated by the Budhavarapu family.  Some of the buildings were constructed by the Bobbili royal family. Baruva of Guwahati had donated Rs. 25,000 at the time of the coronation ceremony of Edward VII for development of the hospital. The hospital was designed with proper elevation, height and ventilation, thus ensuring good  air circulation and natural light inside the  buildings.

king George hospital,

Above image:  The clock tower building came up around 1951. The two old blocks are on either side of the clock tower. It was started as civil dispensary in 1845 and upgraded into a 30 bedded civil hospital in 1857.  Previously, it served the Madras Presidency  army. The hospital's new building was inaugurated by Dewan Bahadur Sri Panaganti Ramayaningar – Hon'ble Raja of Panagal, Chief Minister of Madras on 19 July 1923 The new section with 192 beds affiliated with the Andhra Medical College was named after King George V; formerly the prince of Wales).

king George hospital,

In 1863 the Madras govi issued the notice that medical supplies and aid would be provided by the govt and as to  to clothing, food, etc the public had to to meet the costs if not they would close the dispensary.In a tight situation, the Rajah of Vizianagaram came forward to make an endowment Rs 20,000 to meet the food charges for the poor patients and  he put  the money in the  govt securities. The interest would  meet the food expenses for the patients.

King gorge Hospital, Vizag.

 The Presidency  govt  took a decision to put the new hospital under its management. So between  1864 and 1918 the hospital  and the dispensary  were under the private management . In July 1918 the government took over the management  and opened a hospital in 1923. The cost incurred was roughly Rs.6,0 9 lakh. The civil hospital was  renamed as “King George Hospital in the same year 

Recently the govt planned to open The ‘Sleep Lab’ project  at  the King George Hospital (KGH). The state-of-the-art level-1 ‘Sleep Lab’ was the first of its kind proposed to be set up in Andhra Pradesh, after the bifurcation Andhra state. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between Director of Medical Education (DME) and the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi, in 2017 in this regard.