Dumbarton Cottage Hospital was built in 1890. The original building had two wards, each containing four beds, for patients suffering from non-infectious diseases. The initial cost of this hospital was GBP 2,000. At a later date an additional wing was added at a cost of GBP 1,000 providing accommodation for six new beds and a surgical room. In 1897 the cottage was gifted to the Dumbarton Social Union (founded in 1895) who administered the hospital until the creation of the NHS in 1948.
The main function of the hospital was to perform gynaecological and surgical operations. It was normal practice for a visiting surgeon from Glasgow to perform the operations as there were no resident doctors at the hospital. In 1948 administrative control of the hospital was taken over by the Western Regional Hospital Board, and in 1974 with the reorganisation of the NHS the hospital came under the control of the Dumbarton District of the Argyll and Clyde Health Board. In 1980 all gynaecological and surgical cases were moved to the Vale of Leven District General Hospital. The hospital became a day centre for psychogeriatric patients in 1982.