Garrison hospital Padang

The military 1st class hospital at Padang (Westcoast Sumatra) is mentioned in the publication of D. Schoute “De Geneeskunde in Nederlandsch-Indie in de 19e eeuw”, 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 Padang had on average 155 inpatients. 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 Padang hospital is then 1045 inpatients, whereas 2,839 have been admitted that year. The situation by the end of the year 1890 is a presence of 72 European patients and 83 indigenous patients.

In 1900 the situation of military health facilities was: 30 hospitals, 56 infirmaries and 5 specialized facilities, such as reconvalescent centers and leprosy asylums. The total number of admittances was in 1899: 57,071 and the number of present inpatients by the end of 1899: 3,731. These figures were for the Padang hospital: 1,934 admittances and a presence on 31 December 1899 of 127 patients (See Koloniaal Verslag 1900, Addendum A).

The survey of military hospitals in 1904 (Encyclopaedie voor Nederlandsch-Indie, 833) mentioned three 1st class military hospitals: Weltevreden, Tjimahi and Kota Radja. The last one was considered to be a large modern hospital of 800 beds. In 1904 there were 29 permanent military hospitals and 41 infirmaries (See H. den Hertog, De militair-geneeskundige verzorging in Atjeh 1873-1904, dissertation Nijmegen 1991).

KITLV image collection 1890; signatuur 1561. Military hospital at Padang.

From H.van Kol, Uit de Kolonien: discusses the measures taken against malaria (providing of klamboes) aand the quality of the buildings and supply of water. The other hygienic measures are not satisfying. The military hospital  is open to indigenous civilians for outpatient consultation aand especially the fight against eye diseases. The isolation of leprosy patients is mentioned as a necessary provision.

Padang is in the 1930s a department, subdepartment and district of the Residency Sumatra Westcoast. It is at the same time the capital of the Residency. The capital Padang is seat of the Resident, formerly Governor, and has 52,000 inhabitants of whom 2,600 Europeans and 7,200 Chinese. It has a municipal council, chaired by a mayor and the regional military commander has his office at Padang as well.

Nowadays (2020) the military hospital of Padang is called Rumah Sakit Tentara dr. Reksodiwiryo. Its address is: Jalan Dr. Wahidi no.1 , Ganting Parak Gadang, Kota Padang (Sumatera Barat).
Its website is: