15 pages matching Benjamin Rush in this book
Results 1-3 of 15
What people are saying - Write a review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - LibraryThing
American medical education : the formative years, 1765-1910 by Martin Kaufman is what the title sounds like, a scholarly look at the state of medical education through American history. It is also a surprisingly compelling story and, even though it was written in 1976, very relevant to questions being asked about education today. Early medical schools were for profit ventures largely owned by their professors who were paid only through student fees, a model that, although it resulted in a rush to the bottom in an effort to attract more and more students. Everyone advocating a return to this “for profit, pay for performance” model needs to read this book. Kaufman goes back to the first introduction of Western medicine to North America, physicians employed by the Dutch West India Company and the Massachusetts Bay Company who were sent to slow the loss of colonists to disease. In 1629 Lambert Wilson, a “chirurgeon” was sent not only to treat the Massachusetts Bay colonists but to train a few young men in the healing arts. As Kaufman points out, successful medical men did not hire themselves out to work in wild, uncivilized lands. It is likely that Dr. Lambert was not the best teacher. Learning by apprenticeship became the primary method of learning the medicine in the United States until well into the 19th century. Some colonial doctors traveled to Edinburgh, the site of the best medical college at the time, to receive a formal education but that required an investment that most could not make. In 1765 the Philadelphia Medical School was formed by students returning after being educated in Scotland. By 1800 similar schools were opened New York (King’s College Medical School,1767) and Cambridge (Harvard Medical School, 1783). These were all for profit schools owned by the professors and affiliated with traditional colleges in order to be able to grant degrees and to add prestige to the colleges. The decline in American medical education began, according to Kaufman, in the early 19th century with the opening of the first medical schools not affiliated with a college however he does admit that even in the original schools, it was not the cutting edge of medical knowledge that was being taught, it was what the young professors remembered of the cutting edge lectures they attended in European colleges. The Jacksonian ideals that all men could could do anything inspired states to eliminate the few licensing requirements that existed for medical practice, making it possible to go directly from driving a plow to prescribing dangerous medications. Medical colleges worked to promote their degrees as a mark of competence but, in scrambling for students and the income they brought, fought any effort to limit enrollment by requiring even basic literacy in their new students. Cincinnati’s Daniel Drake first attempted in 1819 to lengthen the school year from four to five months but failed as students sought out quicker, and easier paths to a medical degree. The US Civil War interrupted one promising attempt to reform medical education. Although the banner was picked up after the war the same economic forces that prevented improvement in Antebellum times prevented it during the Gilded Age. It was not until the media, newspapers, began publicizing the Carnegie Foundation’s 1910 report on the state of medical schools authored by education expert Abraham Flexner and public outrage forced legislators to write laws protecting the public from “quackery” that real improvement took hold. I began reading this book as research for a project that only required looking at the changes up to 1850. However, I felt compelled to read the entire work, as I said earlier the story is compelling and relevant. The writing is clear and Kaufman has the narrative skill of a novelist. Although there are newer works on the topic of medical education in the United States, 1982’s “The Social Transformation of American Medicine”, “ The Care of Strangers”, and “ American Medical Schools and the Practice of Medicine” both from 1987,...
Time to Heal: American Medical Education from the Turn of the Century to the ...
Kenneth M. Ludmerer
No preview available - 1999
The Earliest Medical Schools
The Decline of American Medical Education
The Heroic Age and the Growth of the Irregulars
7 other sections not shown