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1978: Regional Psychiatric Centre Unique Institution

Larger Version

The Regional Psychiatric Centre was officially opened on 14 November 1978.  Established by the Canadian Corrections Service, the Centre was the only institution of its kind in the world located near, and affiliated with, a university.    Importantly, the institution is a psychiatric centre, not a traditional correctional facility: patients are admitted and discharged by medical staff.  Built on 55 acres of University property, the Centre provided for joint appointments for senior staff and enabled faculty to provide treatment and conduct research at the Centre.  The University would have refused both location and affiliation had it not been agreed the Centre would conform with hospital accreditation standards.   

The arrangement was intended to ensure a high standard of patient care and enhance training relating to forensic psychiatry for students in psychiatry, law, nursing, pharmacy, and related disciplines.  Additionally, as head of psychiatry Dr. Ian McDonald noted, “universities and medical schools have a responsibility to investigate...pressing health and social problems.”  He anticipated the potential for research “into problems of broad community concern.”

With the leadership of the department of psychiatry, Saskatchewan had become a world leader in psychiatric treatment through the application of major advances in therapy and through the adoption of innovative practices; with the establishment of the Psychiatric Centre, Dr. McDonald anticipated the province could be at the forefront of forensic psychiatry.

Related Collections

College of Medicine fonds, RG 2087
Department of Psychiatry fonds, RG 2089


1978a: Unveiling of plaque at opening of Centre: Dr. R.W. Begg, Mayor Cliff Wright, Donald Yeomans, and Herman Rolfes. Photograph Collection A-6550.

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