Moved by the plight of the needy in Ireland in 1815, Mary Aikenhead founded the Sisters of Charity to serve those living in poverty. They were the first, so-called Walking Nuns who visited the sick in their homes and tried to alleviate the widespread poverty.
The Sisters of Charity were renowned for being bold, courageous, and pioneering. They are the founders of St Vincent’s Hospital.
Their pioneering spirit inspires the ACMD’s Vision for a healthier future for all.
Named after Mary Aikenhead, the Aikenhead Wing stood at the corner of Victoria Parade and Nicholson Street for more than 60 years and holds special memories for many members of the St Vincent’s community.
Over the decades, the Aikenhead building was home to thousands of St Vincent’s nurses. It was a place where they learned their craft, made lifelong friends, and created many treasured memories.
David and Carmel met more than 30 years ago when they both lived at the Aikenhead Wing.
Since 2016, four of the ACMD partners have demonstrated the effectiveness of the ACMD collaborative approach with their successful research translation through the ACMD pilot – BioFab.
At the ACMD BioFab multidisciplinary teams of students, researchers, clinicians, engineers and industry partners come together to build and develop biological structures including cartilage, muscle, bone, nerves and organs.
The ACMD BioFab researchers are using living cells and 3D bio-printing technology to replicate complex tissues that can be used to address various surgical and clinical problems.
Housed in the Clinical Sciences Building on the Fitzroy campus of St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne, the ACMD Biofab is shared by ACMD partners – RMIT University, Swinburne, University of Technology and St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne.
Having demonstrated the effectiveness of its method at driving innovation and collaboration, the ACMD BioFab model will serve as a template for the Centre when it opens.
Today, the Aikenhead legacy is carried on through the new Aikenhead Centre for Medical Discovery, with the centre’s work focused on making a significant impact on the health of our community.