Travel: Hong Kong Museum of Medical Sciences

Last summer, I was supposed to write about our 2016 travels but wasn’t able to start anything because my summer turned out to be full of more travels. So, today I felt the urge to write something while studying dental subjects. I’ve been reading non-stop about dentistry for the past few months due to my work… plus, I just got back to dental school last month.

This article would just be quick since I need to get back in reading Prosthodontics (I need to prepare for my Complete Denture case).

As the title says, this is about my visit to Hong Kong Museum of Medical Sciences. One thing we don’t miss out in every country we visit is to check on their museums – most especially MEDICAL or SCIENCE museums. After this, I’ll try to blog about the Singapore Science Center – an enormous interactive science center.

December of 2016 when John (my partner) and I visited Hong Kong for business and leisure trip. We’re supposed to go to the museum, but unfortunately it was posted to be temporarily closed until February 2017. I have checked their Facebook page again on February, but the museum was still closed.

It was sometime around first week of March when John told me that he had to attend a film convention in Hong Kong. And bam! Perfect timing! The museum’s Facebook page just posted they’ll reopen on March 7.

A day after John’s convention, we visited the Hong Kong Museum of Medical Sciences. Just a brief background about the museum…

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Hong Kong Museum of Medical Sciences

Before it became a museum, it was the first purpose-built public health and clinical laboratory – the Bacteriological Institute of Hong Kong. It was built in response to the 1894 Plague outbreak. The institute developed different vaccines and diagnostic tests for several infectious diseases. It became the Pathological Institute of Hong Kong after World War II. And in 1996, became a museum for medical sciences.

What’s inside?

First level of the museum exhibits everything about the human body. The exhibition includes: “Art & Medicine”, “How Life Begins”, “Visible Human”, “Human Organs”, “4D Virtual Journey into the Human Body”, “Why do we see colour”, “Movement”, and “the Brain”.

Photos below show how busy I am exploring the museum and taking pictures of it while John was busy taking photos of me. LOL!

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The old laboratory of the Bacteriological Institute was located in the upper level of the building – where I stayed a bit longer. I was fascinated seeing all the old paraphernalia used during those times. Even the ceramic sinks are said to be the original ones.  On display is the scene where students of the Hong Kong College of Medicine are dissecting rats for plague surveillance. Other displays include laboratory paraphernalia (agar plates, test tubes, etc), different chemicals in their old bottles (chloroform, alcohol, Albert’s stain, Romanowsky stain, etc), original bottles of vaccines (plague, typhoid, rabies, poliovirus, etc), and a lot more used in laboratories.

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And finally the basement!!! This is the main reason why I wanted to visit this museum. I saw online that an old dental chair was displayed in this museum. We actually thought the dental chair was removed since we didn’t know there’s a basement. HAHA!

Exhibits on how vaccines were produced, the Herbalist shop, and different dental and medical apparatus were located at the basement.

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All in all, the museum is worthy. You get to see so much about the medical background in early times of Chinese. It’s not much of an interactive museum, but you’ll get a closer look of all the old medical paraphernalia and other stuff.

The entrance fee is HKD20 for adults and HKD10 for children under 6 years old. Not bad for an entrance fee not more than 200 pesos! Although, I think the museum would be perfect for adults working or studying in different allied health field and not with children. I don’t think children as young as 6 would appreciate and understand all of the displays in the museum. That’s why I highly suggest my friends (who has kids) to visit the Singapore Science Center when they go to Singapore because their kids would love it so much.

You can check their site for museum hours and how to get there.
http://www.hkmms.org.hk/en/visit-us/hours-location/

See you on my next museum-vetures blog post!

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