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Welcome at German Society for the History of Hospitals

A historical journey through the history of hospitals

St. Elisabeth Gmünd, FreskoFresco, St. Elisabeth Gmünd

We’d like to invite you on a historical journey through the history of hospitals. The debates surrounding modern medicine and health care that are reflected in the institution of the hospital range from “high-tech medicine” to “cost pressure” and “patient well-being” up to “coercive measures”. The roots of these current debates reach far back into hospital history. It is important to consider that the provision of healthcare for a given society can serve to illustrate the fundamental circumstances of co-existence within this society. Nowhere else can this be studied better than in the example of the institutional care provided by hospitals, with extensive source material that reaches back to the Middle Ages. Who designed and constructed the facilities, which were often quite large? Who was provided with care? What did care and everyday life look like inside the institutions? How were these services financed?

The German Association for the History of Hospitals has been interested in these and other questions since 1963. In addition to historians, the Society particularly includes architects as well as engineers and doctors – but, of course, it is also open to everyone interested in hospital history. Our Society sees itself as a platform for all research and initiatives focusing on the history of hospitals and encourages efforts to preserve historically significant hospital buildings as monuments. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask us!

Each year, the Society organizes symposia and excursions that comprise both a scientific program and an extensive sightseeing program with expert guided tours.

Our yearbook Historia Hospitalium is published every two years. In addition to a main topic, it comprises reports on the symposia and excursions as well as book reviews of important new publications in the field of hospital history.

Every two years, the Society awards its sponsorship prize for a scientific paper in the field of hospital history. This prize is awarded particularly to qualification work by young researchers.

We are especially pleased if you decide that you would like to find out more about the Society, participate in our next meeting or subscribe to our yearbook Historia Hospitalium – the easiest way to do so is by becoming a member.


Deutsche Gesellschaft für
Krankenhausgeschichte e.V.

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