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Ontario Genealogy: Medical Records



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Ontario Medical Records

Medical Records in Ontario are held in various places - some are at the Ontario Archives, others are with the original institution. To obtain these records, you should begin with the OA. Find out what they have, and then how to request it. For example, Queen Street Hospital in Toronto has records that go back to 1839. There are nineteenth century records for institutions in London, Hamilton, and Kingston and from Penetanguishene from 1904.

I was able to obtain over 100 pages of records from the Ontario Archives for a patient in London Ontario in the 1920s, after I submitted an official request complete with Freedom of Information Act request form. Some of the more sensitive material in the case logs was blackened out by censors, but most of the file was intact. The cost was minimal and was well worth it.

Archived Records
Files less than 100 years old that are restricted under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. Requests for access must be submitted in writing to the Access Unit of the Archives of Ontario. Files created in whole or in part on or after 6 April 1954 are restricted under the Mental Health Act. Requests for access to records in Archives' custody must be submitted in writing to the Administrator of the appropriate psychiatric hospital.

The following records are available at the Archives of Ontario. Because the Archives uses dynamic links you must go to Archives Descriptive Database, scroll down to RECORD CREATORS, and then use keywords found below (eg. Brockville Asylum) to conduct your search.

RG 10-308 Brockville Asylum for the Insane photograph album 1903-1906
RG 10-308 Brockville Asylum for the Insane patients' clinical case files 1894-1973

RG 10-290 Cobourg Asylum patient registers 1902-1916 (for mentally ill women only)

RG 20-40 Administrative records of the Guelph Correctional Centre 1915-1989

RG 20-55 Administrative records of the Central Prison, Toronto 1874-1927

RG 10-284 Hamilton Psychiatric Hospital patients' clinical casebooks 1876-1906
RG 10-285 Hamilton Psychiatric Hospital patients' clinical case files 1876-1906
RG 10-286 Hamilton Psychiatric Hospital patient registers 1876-1970
RG 10-287 Hamilton Psychiatric Hospital records of the Medical Superintendent 1876-1933
RG 10-288 Hamilton Psychiatric Hospital records of the Bursar 1876-1969

RG 10-291 Kingston Psychiatric Hospital admission warrants and histories 1855-1907
RG 10-292 Kingston Psychiatric Hospital patients' clinical casebooks 1855-1904
RG 10-293 Kingston Psychiatric Hospital patients' clinical case files 1907-1974
RG 10-294 Kingston Psychiatric Hospital patient registers 1855-1923
RG 10-295Kingston Psychiatric Hospital records of the Medical Superintendent 1866-1889
RG 10-296 Kingston Psychiatric Hospital records of the Bursar 1877-1913

RG 10-298 Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital patients' clinical casebooks 1890-1964
RG 10-299 Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital patient registers 1890-1963
RG 10-300 Records of the Medical Superintendent of the Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital 1890-1971
RG 10-301 Records of the Bursar of the Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital 1890-1938

RG 10-279 London Psychiatric Hospital patients' clinical casebooks 1867-1906
RG 10-280 London Psychiatric Hospital patients' clinical case files 1906-1974
RG 10-281 London Psychiatric Hospital patient registers 1870-1957
RG 10-282 Records of the Medical Superintendent of the London Psychiatric Hospital 1878-1970
RG 10-283 Records of the Bursar of the London Psychiatric Hospital 1865-1923

RG 10-302 Penetanguishene Mental Health Centre patient registers 1904-1968
RG 10-303 Penetanguishene Mental Health Centre patients' clinical case files 1904-1977
RG 10-304 Photographs of the Penetanguishene Mental Health Centre 1904-1978
RG 10-305 Records of the Penetanguishene Mental Health Centre Canteen Board 1946-1972

RG 10-268 Queen Street Mental Health Centre admission warrants and histories
RG 10-269 Queen Street Mental Health Centre patients' clinical casebook
RG 10-270 Queen Street Mental Health Centre patients' clinical case files
RG 10-271 Queen Street Mental Health Centre patient registers
RG 10-272 Queen Street Mental Health Centre records of the Medical Superintendent
RG 10-273 Queen Street Mental Health Centre records of the Bursar
RG 10-275 Queen Street Mental Health Centre records of the Board of Commissioners of the Temporary Lunatic Asylum
RG 10-276 Queen Street Mental Health Centre miscellaneous documents and photographs
RG 10-277 Queen Street Mental Health Centre personnel files
RG 10-278 Queen Street Mental Health Centre Fever Therapy Unit records

RG 20-164 Registers of the Toronto Municipal Farm for Men 1914-1939
RG 10-297 Toronto Reception Hospital for the Insane patients' clinical case files
RG 10-314 Toronto Reception Hospital for the Insane patient register
>RG 10-315 Toronto Reception Hospital for the Insane cash book

RG 10-310 Whitby Psychiatric Hospital hemodialysis files 1978-1980

RG 29-58 D'Arcy Place residents' case files 1920-1967 (D'Arcy Place was a facility in Cobourg, Ontario for developmentally disabled individuals)

Homewood Sanitarium fonds 1883-1944 (The Homewood Sanitarium was founded in 1883 as a private institution in Guelph, Ontario for the treatment of mental illness and substance abuse)

RG 29-24 Huronia Regional Centre historical files 1886-1981 (The Huronia Regional Centre is a facility in Orillia, Ontario for developmentally disabled individuals)
RG 29-25 Huronia Regional Centre residents' registers and case files 1876-1971
RG 29-26 Huronia Regional Centre's Medical Superintendent's letterbooks 1877-1909

RG 29-5 Muskoka Regional Centre historical records (The Muskoka Regional Centre was a facility in Gravenhurst, Ontario for developmentally disabled individuals)
RG 29-142 Muskoka Regional Centre residents' case files
RG 29-144 Muskoka Regional Centre developmental programming and assessment services client files
RG 29-157 Muskoka Regional Centre residents' registers and administrative records

RG 10-309 Patients' clinical case files of the Ontario Hospital at Langstaff 1942-1957

RG 29-13 Oxford Regional Centre historical records 1903-1984 (The Oxford Regional Centre opened in Gravenhurst, Ontario in 1906 as the Hospital for Epileptics. In 1919 it was renamed the Ontario Hospital, Woodstock )
RG 29-23 Oxford Regional Centre residents' case files
RG 29-155 Oxford Regional Centre resident accident and injury reports
RG 29-156 Oxford Regional Centre residents' registers and administrative records

RG 10-317 St. Thomas Psychiatric Hospital patient registers 1939-1975

RG 10-311 Goderich Psychiatric Hospital patient registers 1963-1976

Office of the Inspector of Prisons and Public Charities 1868-1934
Lunatic index - 1869-1913 (alphabetic name index of files for patients of mental hospitals and asylums. For each individual file references are given. The subject of the correspondence, usually a death or a discharge from the institution, is provided for many)

Helpful Links
Archives Descriptive Database The Archives Descriptive Database is an online guide to the archival holdings at the Archives of Ontario. Medical Records at the Archives of Ontario ~ an excerpt from Ryan Taylor's book on Global's homepage

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