In the Middle Ages Medical Knowledge was based on a world view in which Destiny, Sin, and Astral influences played an important role. An Illness was a Re-Action of God to a Sin caused by the Act of an Evil Spirit. People believed in]]><![CDATA[ Destiny and Predestination.
At that time the belief in Heaven and Hell was total. Medieval Peasants were taught that the only way to Heaven and salvation was via the Church. Therefore people worked on Church land for free.
Money dues were paid to the church for baptism, marriage and death. Also every year, each family paid a tenth of its yearly worth to the Church. Such an income made the Church fabulously wealthy and powerful. It gained vast areas of land and it was on this land that monasteries were built.
The word 'hospital’ derives from the Latin ‘hospes’, meaning stranger, foreigner, or guest. Hospitals were originally created as a Hostel for the Entertainment of travelers, but were later refounded as hospital for the sick. In the Middle Ages the cheapest place to find a cure was the Hospital of a Monasterie.
The Medieval Value System was based on the Seven Acts of Mercy ( Feed the hungry, Give drink to the thirsty, Clothe the naked, Shelter the Homeless, Visit the sick, Visit the imprisoned, Bury the dead) established by Pope Innocentius III (1198-1216).
The Monastries were obliged to take care for the travelling pilgrims for free. Many sick people stayed at the hospitals of the monasteries to recover (or to die).
At the end of the Middle Ages the Merchants of the Big Cities took over the Power of the Church of Rome. The income of the Church went down dramatically. The amount of poor (and sick) people moving to the Big Cities increased and the Costs of the Free of Charge Hospitals went up.
At the Council of Trent (1545) the Church of Rome decided that the Cities would take over the responsibility and the payment for the Hospitals. From that time on the Hospitals were run by the Merchants as a Commercial Company. The Seven Acts of Mercy lost their meaning. The only thing that counted was making Profit.
The managers of the Hospitals made a distinction between paying and poor non-paying patients. The patients with an income had to pay for their food and everything else that was needed. The sick poor people were put into Almshouses who were paid out of the charity of the Rich.
At that time the Guilds became a very important power in the Cities. They regulated just like the Unions today almost everything to avoid competition and took care of the Healthcare and Education of their members.
The Hospitals even made money with the Sale of the Dead body of a poor person to an Anatomical Theatre. The Theatre was used for Entertainment and the Education of the Guild of Surgeons.
The Rich People were treated in their Own Houses by the Doctores Medicinae, educated at the University. The Doctores used a Medical Theory that was based on Analogy (the Four Humors ). This system looks a lot like the Ancient Practice of Chinese Medicine. The System of the Four Humors was based on Four Personality Types. At that time it was believed that the Mind, the Spirit, was more important than the Body.
The patients were mostly treated with herbs that carried the “signature” of the Disease (Homeopathy). The “dirty” work was done by Barbers (Bloodletting) and Surgeons who were part of the Guild System. The Bloodletting Points have a lot in common with the Acupuncture Points of Chinese Medicine.
The System of the Four Humors was abondoned by the Medical Profession at the End of the 19th century but is still used in Psychology (Archetypes of Jung, Interpersonal Theory, Big Five).
In the 19th Century in the Middle of the Industrial Revolution the Quality of the Medical System was at its deepest point in History.
The Factories took over the work of the Guilds who until that time took care of the Healthcare of their members. In the Big Cities the Owners of the Factories took over control. Some of them started to create Healtcare Facilities for their own Factory Workers.
Many people moved to the big cities to find work and failed to do this. The hygiene in the Cities with its open sewers was very low. Epidemic after epidemic hit the highly vulnarable poor population of the cities.
The innovation of the Health System began in France. In 1617 Vincent de Paul started the Confrerie de Charité. The Daugthers of Charity were rich unmarried women who devoted their lifes to the care of poor and sick people.
In 1633 the first nursing school was started by Louise Legas-de Marillac. In 1836 Theodor Fliedner in Germany together with Elisabeth Fry in England founded a comparable institute of young women of the Protestant Faith called the Deaconesses.
From that time on the Catholic and Protestant Nurses started to reorganize the Medical System. Hundreds of new Hospitals were created in Europe, Asia and the United States.
In the first half of the 20th century, medicine was completely revolutionized with the explosion of the use of medical technology.
Some of the medical technologies invented in this period were the thermometer, the stethoscope, the microscope, the ophthalmoscope, the laryngoscope, and the x-ray. With these medical devices, doctors were able to Sense parts of the patient’s body such as lungs, and hearts. In the beginning the specialists created their own diagnostic centres with their big tools in the center.
Physicians in early 19th century mostly practiced General Medicine including Mental Diseases. At that time the Church was still the most important factor in the Cure of Mental Diseases.
In England at the beginning of the nineteenth century there were, a few thousand ‘lunatics‘ housed in a variety of disparate institutions. After the Creation of the Psychiatric Specialism by 1900 that figure had grown to about 100,000.
When a Specialism is created it creates its own diseases and of course its own patients. The Health Care Industy generates its own Market.
Because of medical technology the development of specialities occured at a very fast rate. In 1930s, 1 out of every 4 doctors was a medical specialist. By 1980, 4 out of 5 doctors were specialists. The extreme specialization of the Physicians created a highly fragmented view on the Human Body and the Human Mind.
At this moment every small part of the Human is analyzed and treated but the effects of the treatment on the other parts is often not known. This generates Side-Effects which create knew diseases which create new diseases.
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries apothecaries started to produce their own drugs in small factories. Later these small factories where joined into one big Chemical Plant. One of the most powerfull conglomerates in the Health Care Industry, IG Farben ,was created in 1926 in Germany.
At this moment the Pharmaceutical Industry is the most important Power in the Medical Ecology. It influences governments, customers and physicians in their decisions to diagnose and cure a disease. To sell their drug the companies create and promote new diseases.
The main effect of this development is that a huge part of the treatment of patients is based on “chemical warfare” against sometimes artificial created enemies.
Until the end of the 19th Century Hospitals looked like Churches. The main function of the Hospitals was to Take Care of the Sick, the task of the Sisters of Charity, the Nurses. The Physicians did not play an important role. At the end of the 19th Century the Medical Profession was not highly valued.
When the Specialized Diagnostic Centres were created the Hospitals changed into a Pavillion. The Patients were moved from Center to Center. At that time the Medical Specialists took over the power in the Hospital. It was also the moment when the System of the Sisters of Charity started to dissolve. Taking Care became a Profession instead of a vocation although many Nurses are still “called” to their profession.
In the last step the Diagnostic, Operational and Care centres of the hospital were fused into one Big Highly Specialized Integrated Building.
What is Happening?
Many people are highly dissatisfied with the Current Medical System. They know that the Fragmented Technological Approach will not solve the problems of their Whole Body and Mind. A huge amount of money is spend at so called Alternative Medicine. This field is just like the Current Medical System highly fragmented and the quality of the practioners is not clear.
What we need is a new approach in which the Reactive Fragmented World of Western Technology and the Preventive Eastern Word of Wholeness are United.
What is Going to Happen?
Medical Technology will take over Medicine just like Technology will taken over every other Profession.
It will not take long until an Intelligent Diagnostic System will be much Smarter than every Specialist on Earth.
It will not take long until there are portable Sensors that are able to Measure everything that is happening in Your Body.
It will not take long until the Diagnostic System will send you the Medicine (or an Advise) you need long before you even think about going to the Doctor.
A complementary approach to the Western Reactive mostly “Chemical“ approach is the Eastern Preventive approach.
In this case the Electro Magnetic (Chi) Field of the Body will play an important role. The E/M Field of your Body is the most sensitive system. It can easily be used to balance all the other Systems.
Of course we have to integrate Body (Medicine) and Mind (Psychology) in our Preventive Approach. The State of Mind of a Person is one of the most important causes of a disease.
It will not take a long time until the Sensors will be able to detect a fatal State of Stress in your Body caused by your Mind.
It will not take long until the People with an Intuitive Medical Talent, the Healers, will become more important than Highly Advanced Diagnostic Tools.
It will not take long before the Preventive Approach will completely take over the Reactive Approach.
If this happens we don’t need the Healthcare System anymore.
What will Happen with the Hospital?
At this moment big investments are made in huge Hospitals. If the Future develops the way it goes these Big Buildings will not be needed anymore.
Treatment and Care will take place in your own House just as happened with the Rich People in the Past.
The only question is.
Will there be enough Caretakers (Nurses?) to Take Care of you or will the Robots take over their task?
Perhaps we have to revive the Daughters (and Sons?) of Charity!