What do I need to know?

  • the name(s) of the institution(s) they were treated at, and
  • dates when they were treated will also help your search.

The records are not catalogued by name but by hospital, type of record and date period.

You will need to order close order Definition Physical records can be ordered for viewing in PROV’s reading rooms.  When a user orders a record, it is reserved solely for their use. the record then browse through the pages to identify a patient’s name to find patient records.

Many patient records will be closed for privacy reasons under Section 9 (s9) of the Public Records Act).


How do I search?

Patient records were filed in different places  e.g. Case Files, Admission Book, Patient clinical notes, Post Mortem Book, Theatre register close register Definition A record in which transactions or activities are logged, usually in chronological or sequential order. etc. try searching using those keywords, or just browse the record listings for each hospital.

About these records

Hospitals kept various records about the patients in their care, from simple lists of who was a patient to detailed medical notes about treatment.

These archived records are mostly from hospitals that have now closed. We do have a large collection of records from the Royal Women’s Hospital which is still operating.

Who created these records?

These records were created by Victorian public hospitals. Many of the hospitals are now closed. We have fewer records for hospitals that are currently operating, as some records will still be in the hospital’s custody.

Next Steps

Once you have found records of interest to you, order them online and then view in our Reading Room.

What are in these records?

The level of detail in the records varies a lot depending on what was retained. In general, if we have any patient records, you might find:

  • the patient’s name
  • the dates of their admission and discharge
  • basic details of their history (age, place of birth, current residence)
  • details of their illness or injury.

In a few cases we have more detailed medical histories of patients.