In 1877 when Sri Lanka was under the British rule, Ratnapura Hospital was established at the SabaragamuwaAyurvedic Hospital building, located in the town centre. The name given was Government Hospital Ratnapura. In 1947 when the hospital was seriously affected with floods, Mr. C. J. Artygala the then Member of Parliament for Ratnapura donated to the government a land of 62 acres named Galkaduwawatta which belonged to him to relocate the hospital.
The foundation stone to this hospital was laid on the 8th of January 1952 by the first Prime Minister Rt. Hon. D. S. Senanayaka. The first Minister of Health Hon S. W. R. D.Bandaranayaka also participated. This happened to be his birthday as well.
The Hospital was designed to resemble another hospital in England. Hospital architecture was unique in that the building took the shape of a crown when viewed from above. The hospital was constructed in 7 years on an accelerated basis. This was declared open for the public by the third Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, Hon. S. W. R. D.Bandaranayakaon the 27th of September 1958.
Until 1996 the hospital administration was under the Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council and thereafter by the central government. In the year 2000, under the JAIKA project the hospital was up graded and a brand new three story building with modern facilities was added.