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medical history



  • Psychiatry Confronts Its Racist Past, and Tries to Make Amends

    "Critics operating both inside and outside the A.P.A. say that it still must overcome high hurdles to truly address its issues around racial equity — including its diagnostic biases, the enduring lack of Black psychiatrists and a payment structure that tends to exclude people who can’t afford to pay out of pocket for services."



  • Pandemic Lessons From the Era of ‘Les Miserables’

    Medical historian Ed Cohen describes the 1832 cholera outbreak as "imperial blowback," as the disease arrived in Europe from their colonies. Nearly 2% of the city's population died, but the aftermath saw an increase in migration from the countryside and a flourishing of public health-oriented planning. 



  • Vaccine Hesitancy is a 21st-Century Phenomenon

    by Gareth Millward

    The progress of public health practice means that today's policymakers seek to make vaccination widespread enough to eradicate, rather than suppress, disease. Looking at success as a continuum could lead to more constructive approaches to work toward eradication. 



  • Revisiting a 19th Century Medical Idea Could Help Address COVID-19

    by Melanie A. Kiechle

    Although the miasma theory of disease has been replaced by the germ theory, it's nevertheless the case that it drew attention to the connection between air quality and health, and the practical measures inspired by it can be useful in the COVID pandemic. 



  • Fauci Donates Model to Smithsonian’s COVID-19 Collection

    Dr. Anthony Fauci's model of the SARS-CoV-2 virus has been a prop in numerous informational sessions since the beginning of the pandemic. Now, the plastic germ will reside in the Smithsonian's collections. 



  • How US History Explains Vaccine Passport Skepticism

    Opposition to requiring documentary proof of vaccination to participate in some activities is rooted both in the weak traditions of public health in the United States and legitimate fears that such "passports" will work to disadvantage the poor, minorities, and others who are less able to access vaccination. 



  • Listen: A History of Pandemic Xenophobia and Racism

    Historical examples abound of public health crises exacerbating racial tensions and exclusions. Medical historian Alexandre White discusses his work on a plague pandemic in early 20th century South Africa 


  • Remembering the Father of Vaccination

    by Richard Gunderman

    "Whether or not Jenner truly saved more lives than any other person, there is no doubt that his pioneering work on immunization laid the groundwork for today’s most effective tool against COVID-19, the vaccine."


  • The "War on Cancer" at 50: The Most Fruitful Failure in Human History

    by Judith L. Pearson

    Announced by Richard Nixon in 1971, the "War on Cancer" has not yielded a cure. But it has driven research that has deepened understanding of cancers and developed life-saving treatments, while erasing ignorance and stigma. It has been one of humanity's most successful failures.