153 Left: Hospital Calvariënberg designed by the Antwerpian architects Bilmeyer en Van Riel and constructed between 1887 en 1891. Formerly the private ward was vested in the frontbuilding, nowadays known as St.Elisabeth building. | RHCL Right: Entrance hall of the private ward Calvariënberg hospital, 1934. | RHCL. GAM F12837 Van Kleef reorganised the medical organisation of Calvariënberg building site was a former military site just inside the town and every morning he saw patients in the free outpatient clinic wall, which after 1867 had been handed over to the town by for the poor. This was an immediate and decisive success. In the government. Van Kleef and the governors of the Burgerlijk 1882, 1,230 new outpatients were registered and 5,225 free Armbestuur visited several hospitals in Germany and Belgium consultations provided. He equipped an operating theatre and and in 1885 their plans were ready. The new hospital, which designated two wards for surgical patients. A microscope was was finished on 16 June, 1891, had four large wards, two for purchased and a bacteriology laboratory set up. The wards were men and two for women, two recreation rooms for recovering regularly cleaned and disinfected, new nurses were trained and patients, a department for use during epidemics and a class the system of rounds was improved. The general approval of ward for paying patients. The hospital had a modern operating these measures shows clearly from the fact that Van Kleef was theatre, an outpatient clinic, offices for personnel, a steam appointed physician in chief in 1884. On this occasion Dr kitchen, a steam laundry room and an disinfecting oven. When Victor Dubois was appointed second physician for the treatment queen Emma conducted the official opening in 1895, the new of internal diseases. During these years Van Kleef had to Calvariënberg could be considered to be one of the most combat several severe epidemics (typhoid fever, diphtheria and modern hospitals in the Netherlands. cholera), during which he had to go to considerable lengths to In this hospital Van Kleef achieved his medical convince the authorities of the necessity of sanitary measures. successes, like innovative stomach and bowel surgery as well as With the arrival of Van Kleef, discussion about a new surgical procedures in arteries, gall bladder and kidney stones. hospital were given a new impulse. For only in a new building For above all he was a surgeon. At that time he was strongly would he be able to realise his ideas about modern hospital involved in the introduction of X-ray investigations: his care. After some friction about financing, the Antwerp enthusiasm contributed to the fact that the first X-rays in the architects Bilmeyer and Van Riel were asked to design a new Netherlands were performed at Maastricht, and the hospital that was to be built in the Abtstraat, next to the old Calvariënberg hospital was the first hospital to have X-ray Calvariënberg Civil Institution for the Sick and Disabled. The equipment at its disposal.
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