Monash Medical Centre Clayton

(opened in 1987; part of Southern Health Care Network since 1995)


Following a merger in 1977 between Queen Victoria Hospital, Jessie MacPherson Private Hospital and McCulloch House that resulted in the creation of the Queen Victoria Medical Centre, short-term specialist paediatric clinics were established at McCulloch House in Clayton Road.


Opening of Monash Medical Centre Clayton on 1 July 1987 for patients. Admission of first patients on 19 July 1987. Patient care at MMC Clayton effectively commenced with the birth of a baby girl, Jessica Lauren Bailey, at 3.22 a.m. on 20 July 1987. As a result of a merger between two metropolitan hospitals, the Queen Victoria Medical Centre and Prince Henry’s Hospital, Monash Medical Centre Clayton was officially opened on 19 September 1987 by the then Premier Mr John Cain. In the same year, Monash Medical Centre Clayton became the second-largest children’s hospital in Victoria, where for the first time the highest standard of neonatal services became available in the South East.


Following the completion of the construction of the 50-place Kanooka Child Care Centre adjacent to Monash Medical Centre Clayton, this centre obtained official registration with Community Services Victoria on 21 August.


A significant achievement was the expansion of the Thalassaemia/Medical Therapy Unit, originally based at Queen Victoria Hospital, by Dr Fred Jensen and by Dr Rae Matthews. Although this meant that MMC Clayton was now the only Victorian hospital offering specialist care and support to child patients, in particular, who suffer from thalassaemia, a result of the relocation of this unit was that a majority of these patients, mostly from Mediterranean backgrounds and living in Melbourne’s South East were in fact better catered for healthwise. During that year, the Unit expanded to become the State’s major treatment Unit for both adults and children, with 120 people under its care.


Clayton campus became the site of Victoria’s second Ronald McDonald House on land provided by MMC Clayton. The project attracted widespread community support, with McDonald’s and the Commonwealth Golf Club leading the way in raising the $1 million needed to construct the House. Today it is one of 12 Ronald McDonald Houses Australia-wide.


A new support group “KOALA” (Kids Oncology and Leukaemia Action Group) was formed to provide information and support to children being treated for cancer and haematological diseases at Monash Medical Centre and their families.


Establishment of the Southern Health Care Network, consisting of Monash Medical Centre Clayton and Monash Medical Centre Moorabbin and adding to its

catchment area already-existing and well-established institutions, Dandenong and District Hospital and Kingston Centre.


In October, a new paediatric gym opened at Monash Medical Centre Clayton.


In July, the Southern Health Care Network was superseded by Southern Health, which had formed a partnership with the Federal and State Governments to offer a system of “integrated care” to patients. As a result, Southern Health became the largest metropolitan health service in Victoria.


In mid-January, birthing services moved back from Monash Medical Centre’s Moorabbin Campus to Clayton Campus. There was world-first research at MMC Clayton into music therapy for infants withdrawing from foetally acquired drug dependence. In July, the Starlight Children’s Foundation officially opened its highly anticipated Starlight Room at Monash Medical Centre Clayton.


On 14 June, a new extension to Ronald McDonald House in Monash was opened in order to accommodate long-term critically ill young patients and their parents.


Dr Chris Kimber and a team of paediatric neonatologists successfully performed the world’s first in utero surgery on Baby Leah, whose umbilical cord was found to be obstructing the blood flow to her right foot.