Overview - Medicine

The Department of History of Medicine was started in 1964 by Prof Emeritus Retd. Major General S L Bhatia on invitation of the founder Dean of St. John’s Medical College, Dr L. Monteiro. It’s focus has been to:

• Bring together all persons interested in History of Medicine.

• Arrange lectures, discussions, exhibitions to spread the knowledge of History of Medicine and Indian Medicine, in particular.

• Curate and manage an eclectic library and archive of books and articles on History of Medicine and assist faculty and researchers on the historical aspects of their special subjects relating to history of medicine.

In 1974, a one of its kind museum, named the S.L. Bhatia Museum of the History of Medicine was opened under the Department. It contains Bhatia’s large collection of books, periodicals, medical artefacts and pictures. The story of the Museum starts in the 1950’s when General Bhatia who had retired in Bangalore wanted to start an Institute of the History of Medicine together with the Government of Mysore. It did not materialize and what was the government’s loss was St John’s gain. His bequest still forms the core of the museum although considerable additions have been made over the years.

Ever year, the Department organizes the Major General S.L Bhatia Memorial Oration where eminent speakers are invited to talk on their expertise in the history of medicine and the medical humanities.

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