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Were There Hospitals Before The Middle Ages?
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As early as the third century B.C., Buddhists (followers of Buddhism, a religion founded by Siddhārtha Gautama; c. 563–c. 483 B.C.) in India built hospital-like facilities. In A.D. 394 Fabiola, a woman healer and a Christian (follower of a religion founded by Jesus of Nazareth, also called the Christ; c. 6 B.C.–A.D. 30) opened a refuge (safe place) for the poor and homeless, which is considered the first public hospital in Europe. At a hospital in Baghdad (in present-day Iraq) in 970, doctors served patients and dispensed drugs and spices with medicinal value.
Hospitals with modern facilities date from the Middle Ages (c. 450–c. 1500). During this time religious groups built public hospitals to serve the poor because most well-to-do people were visited by doctors in their own homes. One such public hospital was the Hôtel-Dieu in Paris, which was founded in the 1600s.
Further Information: Garza, Hedda. Women in Medicine. New York: Franklin Watts, 1994; International Network for the History of Hospitals. [Online] Available http://www.cf.ac.uk/hisar/people/kw/inhh.htm, November 6, 2000; Mayeaux, E. J. A History of Western Medicine and Surgery. [Online] Available http://lib-sh.lsumc.edu/fammed/grounds/history.html, November 6, 2000.
Posted by fact-finder on October 10, 2011 at 4:00 PM (Answer #1)
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