Name 5 (or so) important events in the history of medicine in the last 150 years.

Essay by hills08Junior High, 9th gradeA+, May 2006

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In the early 1800s, hospitals were squalid pits of disease where patients were as likely to die as to be cured. Yet the work of one woman brought about a dramatic change. Florence Nightingale was born to a wealthy family in 1820. But she did not want to lead an idle, pointless life. Instead, she decided to work with the sick, although at that time, many hospitals were sordid, rowdy places. In 1852, after a lot of arguments, her father allowed her to train in a hospital in Germany. In 1853, Nightingale took over a run-down hospital in London and made it run cleanly and efficiently. Civilian hospitals were almost as dirty as military ones, while the untrained nurses had a reputation for being lazy, careless and often drunk. But Nightingale soon changed all that. She hounded politicians to make improvements and wrote books on the best way to organize hospitals.

She also used all the money she'd been given to set up the Nightingale School for Nurses in London. Soon, all nurses were highly qualified. By her death in 1910, Florence Nightingale had created a revolution in hospital care. At last, nurses and patients were treated with respect, and the foul, filthy conditions of hospitals had faded into history. Because of Florence Nightingale nurses were now properly trained and the sanitary conditions in hospitals were much more improved- thousands of lives were saved because of it. Now scientists could study what really caused disease without the interference of all the germs.

Robert Koch was a German doctor and scientist. He was convinced that microbes caused human disease but he did not believe that any one identifiable germ caused a particular disease in human beings. The important contribution that Koch made to the development of medicine was his method of...