The primary ward was the central facility of Nankoin, which was founded by Doctor Koan Takata in 1899 as a tuberculosis sanatorium, said to have been the best in Asia.
Many cultural figures have either been treated there or visited, and have written about their experiences in their works.
The building is one of the few Meiji heritages in the prefecture and has been designated by the national government as a tangible cultural property.