Bellevue: Three Centuries of Medicine and Mayhem at Americas Most Storied Hospital by David M. OshinskyFrom a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian comes a riveting history of New Yorks iconic public hospital that charts the turbulent rise of American medicine.
Bellevue Hospital, on New York Citys East Side, occupies a colorful and horrifying place in the public imagination: a den of mangled crime victims, vicious psychopaths, assorted derelicts, lunatics, and exotic-disease sufferers. In its two and a half centuries of service, there was hardly an epidemic or social catastrophe or groundbreaking scientific advance that did not touch Bellevue.
David Oshinsky, whose last book, Polio: An American Story, was awarded a Pulitzer Prize, chronicles the history of Americas oldest hospital and in so doing also charts the rise of New York to the nations preeminent city, the path of American medicine from butchery and quackery to a professional and scientific endeavor, and the growth of a civic institution. From its origins in 1738 as an almshouse and pesthouse, Bellevue today is a revered public hospital bringing first-class care to anyone in need. With its diverse, ailing, and unprotesting patient population, the hospital was a natural laboratory for the nations first clinical research. It treated tens of thousands of Civil War soldiers, launched the first civilian ambulance corps and the first nursing school for women, pioneered medical photography and psychiatric treatment, and spurred New York City to establish the countrys first official Board of Health.
As medical technology advanced, voluntary hospitals began to seek out patients willing to pay for their care. For charity cases, it was left to Bellevue to fill the void. The latter decades of the twentieth century brought rampant crime, drug addiction, and homelessness to the nations struggling cities problems that called a public hospitals very survival into question. It took the AIDS crisis to cement Bellevues enduring place as New Yorks ultimate safety net, the iconic hospital of last resort. Lively, page-turning, fascinating, Bellevue is essential American history.
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Many hospitals came and went during the three centuries of the American colonies. By the end of the sixteenth century some hospitals were operating throughout the Americas, largely in response to the frequent outbreaks of disease in the territories. The Spanish Crown needed to promote the good health of their subjects, especially considering that the indigenous people represented the major labor force for the colonies.
David M. Oshinsky
The Oldest Hospitals In The United States
Whether a person is injured, sick, bringing new life into the world or in the end stages of their life, he or she will often end up in the hospital. Most historians say the hospital was up and running by , however, the exact period of its opening and its final completion is debated. It is said that Cortes had a hospital along with a church built to tend to poor native Mexicans and the Aztec soldiers who were wounded after fighting with the Spanish. In addition to being the first hospital in the North American continent, it was also the site of the first North American autopsy. Medical students from the Royal and Pontifical University of Mexico performed the autopsies to learn anatomy in The hospital and the church were in a complex split into four areas.
Bellevue Hospital, New York - 1736
Until the 19th century, most Americans endured illnesses at home with little assistance from medical personnel. Medical facilities were very few and concentrated in urban areas. In the United States , hospitals were founded from homes and institutions that nursed and cared for the ailing poor. Rooted in the tradition of providing assistance to the poor, the public hospitals trace their origin from the efforts by the community to provide shelter and care for the ill, disable, and deprived. In the US, the Bellevue, Charity, and Pennsylvania hospitals are some of the oldest, dating back to the mids. Today, there are thousands of hospitals and health facilities throughout the United States.
Pennsylvania Hospital is a private , non-profit , bed teaching hospital located in Center City Philadelphia and affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania Health System. Founded on May 11, , by Benjamin Franklin and Dr. Thomas Bond , Pennsylvania Hospital is the earliest established public hospital in the United States. Pennsylvania Hospital was originally conceived in by Dr. Thomas Bond as an institution "for the reception and cure of the sick poor It was funded by "matching grant" to donations of the people of Philadelphia by a Bill which the House passed unanimously on 7 February
You entered an invalid username or password. Please try again. Your account will be locked after five unsuccessful tries. In the early nineteenth century, and for more than a century to come, most Americans gave birth and endured illness and even surgery at home. They belonged to a largely rural society, and few among them would ever have occasion to visit a hospital. Hospitals in the United States emerged from institutions, notably almshouses, that provided care and custody for the ailing poor. Rooted in this tradition of charity, the public hospital traces its ancestry to the development of cities and community efforts to shelter and care for the chronically ill, deprived, and disabled.