Annual Public Lecture

Annual Lecture – Roberta Bivins – ‘Cultured Comparisons: The Role of the NHS in US Healthcare Debates’

  Life Magazine, 1951   Roberta Bivins Centre for the History of Medicine, University of Warwick In 1948, American politicians and medical elites described Britain’s fledgling National Health Service in diabolical terms — ‘a product of the nether abyss’ that ‘prostituted’ a once honourable profession, promoted communism, and offered the British people only ‘long queues’ for ‘necessarily […]

A Short History of NICE

Nicholas Timmins (Senior Fellow at the King’s Fund) Comment by Sir Michael Rawlins. Nicholas Timmins and Sir Michael Rawlins, the authors with John Appleby of A Terrible Beauty: A Short History of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence describe its origins and past and the challenges it currently faces. Professor Sir Michael Rawlins […]

Disease on Trial: the Courts, the Lawsuit and the Public Negotiation over Responsibility for Disease

Professor David Rosner (Ronald H. Lauterstein Professor of Sociomedical Sciences and Professor of History at Columbia University, and Co-Director of the Center for the History and Ethics of Public Health at Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health.) Thursday, 20th of November 2014 Abstract: Over the past twenty years a vast public negotiation has taken place over […]

How much VD was there in Georgian London? Can we estimate the population prevalence of STIs before the twentieth century?

Professor Simon Szreter (Cambridge University) 19th November 2013 The venereal diseases feature strongly in Boswell’s diary and consequently Georgian London has passed into literature and popular history as a byword for sexual licence. But is this at all justified as a general description of the capital and its population? Can we hope to know anything […]

Escaping Melodramas: Retelling the histories of the U.S. Public Health Service STD Research Studies in Tuskegee and Guatemala

Professor Susan Reverby (Wellesley College, USA) 20th March 2013 Bioethics is often thought of as having been “born in scandal and raised in protectionism.” Less often acknowledged is that bioethics has been so nourished by melodramatic historical frames and paradigmatic stories that the effort to provide a different form of analysis has been problematic. Using […]

The NHS as an unsustainable legacy cost? Patient rights and the duties of doctors and the state, 1720s to 2000s

Professor Steven King (University of Leicester) 9th November 2011 At a time when the Government is seeking to redefine the role of doctors in health care commissioning, subsidiary budget holders faced by the prospect of financial meltdown are seeking to pare back treatments regarded as ‘rights’ by some sections of the British population. Meanwhile public […]

Return to Deadlock? Health-Care Reform in America

Paul Starr (University of Princeton) 8th February 2010 After nearly a century of failure, the struggle for universal health care in the United States seemed to be on the verge of a breakthrough in December after the Senate and House of Representatives passed separate, though similar, bills that would extend coverage to a projected 95 […]

Framing the Framingham Heart Disease Study

Professor Gerald Oppenheimer (City University of New York and Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University) 11th November 2010 Following World War II, the search for the causes of coronary heart disease (CHD), the leading cause of death in the United States and Great Britain profoundly changed the purview of epidemiology, shifting its primary focus […]

‘Can We Eraducate Malaria? Lessons From the WHO Malaria Eradication Campaign of the 1950’s and 60’s’

Randall Packard (Johns Hopkins University) 5th November 2009 This talk examines the challenge of eradicating malaria by drawing lessons from the earlier WHO led Malaria Eradication Programme of the 1950s and 60s. It suggests that while current malaria control and elimination efforts differ in significant ways from those of the earlier campaign, there are some […]

“The Bevan-Morrison debate: the shape of things to come in the NHS?”

Professor Rudolf Klein 12 November 2008 Ruldolf Klein is a distinguished policy analyst and commentator on the British health services, and his history of the NHS is now in its 5th edition (The new politics of the NHS: from creation to reinvention). His lecture tackled the issue of central/local relations, from the inception of the […]

‘The Stress of Life: Hans Selye and the Search for Stability’

Mark Jackson (Director, Centre for Medical History, University of Exeter) 21st November 2007 Since the mid-20th century the notion of stress as a determinant of chronic disease has found acceptance both within psychology and clinical allergy, and within popular culture. The vocabulary of stress has thus achieved a powerful presence in everyday speech as a […]