Charles Camsell Sanatorium

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Charles Camsell Sanatorium
Construction Began 1914
Opened 1946 (as a hospital)
Closed 1996
Current Status Closed
Building Style Cottage Plan
Location Edmonton, AB
Alternate Names
  • Charles Camsell Indian Hospital
  • Charles Camsell Hospital




History[edit]

First established as a Jesuit College in the early 1900’s. In 1942, the building and lands were purchased the Canadian military and leased to the American military for use as a holding and forwarding centre for army personnel and civilian engineers employed in the construction of the Alaska Highway. By 1944, the Americans terminated their lease, at which time the Canadian military converted the property for use as a military hospital. The Charles Camsell Indian Hospital officially opened in August 1946, named after Dr. Charles Camsell, a former Deputy Minister of Mines and Resources. The Camsell was the largest of IHS’ facilities, with 500 beds by 1950, compared to the second largest facility in Nanaimo, British Columbia, with 210 beds. By the mid-1960s, poor quarantine control provided by the dormitory-style wards of the original buildings prompted the approval of a new hospital to be built, and the original facilities be torn down. On October 10, 1967 the new hospital was officially opened, and renamed as The Charles Camsell Hospital.

In 1973, due to the slowing of tuberculosis infections and more healthcare facilities opening in the Canadian north, the Camsell transitioned to become a general treatment hospital. On December 1, 1980, the hospital and its staff of 585 were transferred to provincial jurisdiction, forming part of the newly-established Metro-Edmonton Hospital District No. 106. It served the general population until January 1 1993, when it merged with the Royal Alexandra Hospital. The last emergency room patient was treated on March 9, 1994. Two years later, the Charles Camsell Provincial General Hospital officially closed on March 31, 1996.

A developer recently bought the property which sits in the residential neighbourhood of Inglewood in Edmonton. The company is working on removing asbestos from the building with goals of eventually turning it into a 230 unit residential condominium project.