Although originally incorporated in 1912 as "The Cochrane General Hospital" and records which indicate that it "opened for business" in 1916, 1915 is considered the official anniversary date since it is the year the building was constructed. The original placard which bears the date 1915 is presently displayed in the Lady Minto Hospital atrium.
In July 1915 steps were taken to change the name from "The Cochrane General Hospital" to "The Lady Minto Hospital at Cochrane" in order to obtain a $3,000 grant from the Victorian Order of Nurses. Lady Minto was Mary Caroline Grey, wife of the 4th Earl of Minto who was Governor General of Canada from 1898 to 1904. Known for her benevolent character, she instituted a fund for the building of cottage hospitals in remote districts across the country. As an Honorary President of the Victorian Order of Nurses, Lady Minto campaigned for good health care in rural areas and her fundraising efforts resulted in the establishment of 43 hospitals in communities and isolated areas throughout Canada. Each of these hospitals were named after Lady Minto, followed by the community name. Aside from Cochrane, the only other hospital to have kept the original name is the Lady Minto Gulf Islands Hospital located in British Columbia. (An interesting side note, "The Lady Minto Hospital at Cochrane" was a training school for Nurses from 1922 to 1933!)
The original hospital which underwent extensive renovations in the early 1950s was eventually utilized as the local medical clinic when a new hospital was built on an adjacent lot in 1977/78, and finally demolished in 2004 following the construction of a new Medical Clinic named the "Minto Health Centre".
In the mid-90s, Cochrane faced the closure of its nursing home and the loss of long-term care beds within the community. The Hospital Board acquired the licence for the beds, and began plans to redevelop an existing wing of the hospital into a 33-bed long-term care unit. A successful fundraising campaign helped build the new Villa Minto long-term care unit which opened its doors on November 25th, 1998.
Today Lady Minto Hospital is a thriving acute general hospital which provides a wide range of in-patient, complex continuing care, emergency, out-patient, ambulatory care, general surgery, and long-term care services. Currently the hospital is designated as having 25 Acute, 8 Complex Continuing Care and 37 Long-Term Care beds.
|Lady Minto Hospital By-Laws|