Garrison hospital Cilacap


Military hospital Tjilatjap 1908 (KITLV 50026)

Before the military garrison hospital was founded, an infirmary was described by D. Schoute De Geneeskunde in Nederlandsch-Indie in de 19e eeuw”, GTNI 75 (1935) 1, 50-51.It was a dilapidated bamboo building in the 1830s that badly needed repairs. The health situation was precarious because of the large marshes in the surroundings, which caused malaria fever. The officer of health was preoccupied with his plantation firm on the neighbouring island of Noesa Kambangan. In 1837 a second officer of health was available at Banjoemas who could assist in looking after the hospital and the vaccination.

The military garrison hospital 1st class at Tjilatjap (Central Java, Cilacap) was mentioned in the same publication of D. Schoute, GTNI 75 (1935) 10, 827. The article refers to a survey of  all the military facilities in 1867 . In that year the garrison  hospital of Tjilatjap had on average 141 patients. The hospital was part of the Military Medical Service (MGD),  which in 1867 (the year of the survey of all military facilities) managed a total of 79 facilities (3 large military hospitals, 35 garrison hospitals and 41 infirmaries) with on average 4,244 occupied beds.

Some 25 years later, the Annex D of the Koloniaal Verslag 1890 reports a total  of 3,358 inpatients by the end of that year, whereas 52,631 patients have been admitted for the whole of the Netherlands Indies. The report concerns 28 military hospitals, 54 ziekenzalen (infirmaries) and 6 specialized facilities. The average occupation rate of the Tjilatjap hospital is then 1 patients, whereas 37 have been admitted that year. The situation by the end of the year 1890 is: there are no patients present.

In 1894 the military hospital is closed and its buildings were transferred to the civil administration. They used the buildings for a temporary small indigenous civil hospital that was opened in 1895.

Tjilatjap was in the 1930s a regency,district and subdistrict with a main town of the same name in the Residency of Banjoemas, province of Central Java. The regency had 571,000 inhabitants, of whom 1,000 Europeans  and 4,300 Chinese. The population is partly Soendanese. The town was notorious because of the malaria. With a tramway the town is connected to the railway to East and West Java (Gonggryp 1934, 1421). See also the Grote Atlas van Nederlands Oost Indie (Asia Maior/KNAG, 2003) with a townplan of Tjilatjap in 1944 on which the location of the hospital (p. 277).