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The Heberden Society presents Dr. Andrew Schafer

By Nicole Milano on February 9, 2021 - 2:41am

In Search of the Cause of Death of Dr. Semmelweis: From Budapest to Vienna and Back Again

Join Dr. Andrew Schafer, Professor of Medicine in Hematology-Oncology and Director of the Richard T. Silver Center for Myeloproliferative Neoplasms, as he presents at 5:00 pm on March 10, 2021 on the adventures he encountered while writing a book on the remarkable events of Dr. Ingác Semmelweis’s life.

In the mid-19th century a young obstetrician working under an aristocratic and autocratic obstetrics chief at the University of Vienna’s medical school made a discovery that has- even today- saved an inestimable number of lives! The Hungarian Ingác Semmelweis was appalled to find that up to a quarter of all women admitted to the Allgemeines Krankenhaus der Stadt Wien, Vienna’s city hospital for the indigent, died in their peripartum period. Under threat of being fired if he intervened, Semmelweis explored why these women died and how to prevent their deaths. He was later driven out of Vienna by the medical establishment and political forces, and died of mysterious causes two weeks after being committed to an insane asylum.

The Heberden Society history of medicine lecture series is generously supported during the 2020-2021 season by David J. Wolf, MD. This lecture is free and open to the public! 

Please note this event has already occurred. The recording is available at

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