Charles Drew sitting with medical residents at Freedmen's Hospital

The 1910 Report That Disadvantaged Minority Doctors

A century ago, the Flexner Report led to the closure of 75% of U.S. medical schools. It still explains a lot about today’s unequal access to healthcare.
Richard Wright

Richard Wright Helped Bring Mental Healthcare to Harlem

The famous novelist worked to fight the psychological cost of black oppression.
An empty bottle for opium tincture

When Doctors Took Opiates To Gain Credibility

Long before today's opioid epidemic, doctors shared stories of their own experiments with the drugs they prescribed their patients.
King & Carter Jazzing Orchestra, Houston Texas, 1921

When Jazz Was a Public Health Crisis

In the 1920s, jazz music was thought to cause physical illness or even disability.
A healthcare rally in Detroit, MI

Did the Great Recession Make Us Sick?

Mass layoffs, high unemployment, and home foreclosures resulted in declines in mental health. There may also be long-term effects that linger.
A nurse helping an elderly patient

How Second Wave Feminism Almost Killed Nursing

An expert wonders if the waning number of women interested in nursing was the unintended consequence of the women’s rights movement of the 1970’s.
diseases cures

The (Unproven, Deadly) Common Cure for Schizophrenia

Insulin coma and deep sleep therapies were used for years on patients with mental illness, even though there was never any evidence they worked.
union soldiers disability

The Invisible Struggles of the Civil War’s Veterans

Many Civil War veterans like Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain came out of combat with injuries and lasting disabilities that no one could see.
breastfeeding eighteenth century

When Breastfeeding Was a Civic Duty

Think people are judgmental of mothers now? In the 18th- and 19th-centuries, mothers who bottle-fed their babies were blamed for many of society's ills.
mesmerism

The Mystical Practice That Preceded Medical Anesthesia

For a brief period of time in the 19th century, doctors used "mesmerism" for pain-free surgery.