Royal Perth Hospital is Western Australia’s longest-serving hospital. Its origins date back to the old Colonial Hospital, which was established on Garden Island in 1829.
Today, Royal Perth Hospital is one of Australia’s largest and busiest hospitals, with the second largest trauma workload in the country and one of the busiest Emergency Departments in Australasia.
The 833-bed hospital spreads across two campuses – the Wellington Street Campus, which is centrally located in the City of Perth, and the Shenton Park Campus, situated in the western suburbs. It is part of the South Metropolitan Health Service, one of the fastest growing health services in Western Australia.
As a premier teaching hospital, Royal Perth Hospital provides services to adults in all clinical fields (except obstetrics). Areas of excellence include interventional neuroradiology, cardiac and transplant, burns management, bone marrow transplantation, rehabilitation medicine and trauma services.
Royal Perth Hospital is renowned for contributing to innovation and excellence in medical research and services. The Hospital has hosted many significant medical breakthroughs; most significantly, the bacterium Helicobactor pylori, which was found to cause stomach ulcers, and won the 2005 Nobel Prize for former staff members Dr Robin Warren and Professor Barry Marshall.
The 7,000 staff members (about 4,700 full-time equivalents) provide exceptional care and committed service to RPH patients, and over 500 volunteers assist in making patients more comfortable during their stay.
RPH provides services to adults in all clinical fields (except obstetrics) and provides state-wide services in several areas,
- burns treatment
- major trauma
- heart and lung transplant
- bone-marrow transplant
- refractory epilepsy
- spinal rehabilitation
- head injury rehabilitation, and
- interventional neuroradiology
Areas of excellence include:
RPH is a leader in the Australasian region, in the continually changing world of radiology. The Federally-funded Interventional Neuroradiology Unit at RPH was the first in Australia to be recognised as a centre of excellence in Australasia in the field of Intravascular Neuroradiology, and RPH was also the first Hospital in the Southern Hemisphere to treat aneurysms using neurointerventional embolisation technique.
The RPH Stroke Unit is led by internationally renown stroke expert Professor Graeme Hankey, who is the author of more than 250 articles in peer review medical journals, and eight books on stroke and neurology.
Dr Hankey has given more than 350 invited lectures internationally. His main research interests include epidemiological studies and clinical trials of treatment strategies for acute stroke and stroke prevention (such as the Perth Community Stroke Study, which is a world-first, and the "VITAmins To Prevent Stroke" (VITATOPS) trial, for which he is the principal investigator).
The RPH Burns Unit and it's director - 2005 Australian of the Year Fiona Wood - had already received international respect in the medical community when the Australian public - and the world - heard about their work during the aftermath of the Bali bombing in October 2002.
RPH's world-leading medical contributions include:
- The 2005 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine awarded to Professor Barry Marshall and Dr Robin Warren for their groundbreaking research at Royal Perth Hospital between 1979 and 1984. Dr Warren was the first person to identify the spiral bacterium, Helicobacter pylori and Professor Marshall discovered that it caused gastritis-associated dyspepsia and ulcers, which also increased the risk of stomach cancer. Further studies by Dr Warren, Dr Barry Marshall and colleagues in the Departments of Anatomical Pathology, Microbiology and Gastroenterology between 1981 and 1987 determined that antibiotic treatment reduced ulcer recurrence.
- The first electron microscopy demonstration of virus particles in patients with HIV infection, in 1983, by Dr John Armstrong and Mr Robert Horne of the Department of Anatomical Pathology.
- The creation of one of the world's first Intra-aortic Stents, with Imaging Radiographer David Hartley and Vascular Surgeon Michael Lawrence-Brown, in 1994.
- The world's first longitudinal stroke survivor research project, "The Perth Community Stroke Study" in 1989/1990.
- In 1994, RPH started the first true Domiciliary Bone Marrow Transplant Service in the world.
- In 2003, the discovery that every person with HIV has a different form of the virus and that it tailors itself to the individual's immune response. In 2005 RPH's Centre for Clinical Immunology and Biomedical Statistics Executive Director, Professor Simon Mallal, and his team, received a grant of US $9.8 million from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to continue this research world wide.
South Metropolitan Area Health Service
Acting SMAHS Chief Executive,
Acting RPH Executive Director,
Dr Paul Mark
Royal Perth Hospital officially became part of the South Metropolitan Area Health Service (SMAHS) on January 1, 2006.
The SMAHS is led by Acting Chief Executive Nicole Feely, while Acting Executive Director Dr Paul Mark leads RPH.
The South Metropolitan Area Health Service (SMAHS) is the fastest growing health service in Western Australia and oversees
comprehensive tertiary, secondary and primary-level health care services to families across 16 local government regions.
It currently includes two major teaching hospitals - RPH in the city centre and Fremantle Hospital in the coastal tourist
centre of Fremantle - as well as six secondary hospitals, in Rockingham, Mandurah, Armadale, Bentley and East Fremantle. It also includes
comprehensive Population Health and Mental Health Services.
The SMAHS is about to undergo dynamic growth - including the planning and building of the State's leading tertiary facility,
the 1000-bed Fiona Stanley Hospital in the southern suburb of Murdoch - and the upgrade to General Hospital status of Rockingham/Kwinana
District Hospital and Armadale-Kelmscott Memorial Hospital.
Under the visionary changes planned, the SMAHS will have job security, state-of-the art facilities and exciting employment
growth opportunities in a family-oriented region with all modern facilities.