ACT Pathology Museum

Our Pathology Museum was started in the late 1950s at the old Royal Canberra Hospital by pathologist and technicians of the era. The collection grew slowly, but by about 1990 had been relegated to shelves in the Infectious diseases section of the building. The collection was shrouded with curtains and little used. When Professor Peter B Herdson took up his appointment as Director of ACT Pathology in 1991, it was decided that there should be significant reorganisation to include the development of a new Mortuary and Pathology Museum. Funds for this purpose were obtained and the museum was established on level 1 of the Pathology building. Shortly thereafter, the Canberra Clinical School was established as part of the University of Sydney School of Medicine and the Mortuary and Pathology Museum facilities proved to be an important development for medical students here in Canberra. At about this time, Mr Louis Szabo was appointed in charge of the Mortuary and Pathology Museum and in the intervening years all the specimens have been catalogued, most re-potted, and many many new specimens have been added to the museum collection. A clinical summary relating to each case has been prepared. In 2001 the Australian National University (ANU) Medical School was established and the Mortuary and Museum joined forces with their Anatomy Department. The museum is now linked by computer with the ANU Medical School. After this long gestation, ACT Pathology and Canberra Clinical School are proud of the Mortuary and Pathology Museum which together form a modern teaching and learning centre . More and more medical students, nursing students and postgraduate trainees are using the facility, and we now are part of ACT community education programs involving High Schools and other educational organisations in Canberra. We are proud to display a few specimens from our collection, to share with visitors to this website.


The Pathology Museum may be viewed by the general public. However, some people may find some images disturbing. Parental guidance is recommended.