Celebrating unsung medical heroes

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Throughout time, physicians have made their mark on history. Think of such luminaries as Hippocrates, Alexander Fleming and his invention of penicillin, Edward Jenner and small pox vaccination, Louis Pasteur and microbiology, Sigmund Freud and psychoanalysis. All of whom arguably had a profound effect on the course of history.

Now Blackwell, in celebration of the opening of its new flagship medical bookstore, is launching a search for unsung medical heroes, those physicians who never received such recognition for their innovations and breakthroughs. For example, did you ever hear of William Brockeden who in 1943 patented the tablet press hence giving us the possibility for the mass production of medicines? A Hungarian doctor, Ignaz Semmelweis, discovered that disease transmission could be prevented through the simple act of washing one’s hands. Surely something we take completely for granted nowadays. Then there is Dr Dilip Mahalanabis who, along with his team, developed oral rehydration therapy (ORT) and in doing so, helped to prevent the death of millions from dehydration from diarrhoea, still the leading cause of death for children in developing countries.

Other nominees include anaesthetists, psychologists and pathologists who have lived and worked throughout the ages....

[You can vote at Blackwell's website.]

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