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Lynda H Appell

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1910 Flexner Report still influencing US Health Care
By Lynda H Appell   

Last edited: Sunday, September 16, 2001
Posted: Sunday, September 16, 2001

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The Flexner report is still influencing US Med. Schools and discouraging Althealth.



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Health and Fitness > Alternative Medicine > Healing Methods


A report commissioned in 1910 is still strongly influencing US Health and discouraging Alternative Medicine
by mugwort, 10th September 2001.


While there are some rather positive aspects to the Flexner report it also greatly discourages alternative healing techniques.


In 1910 the Abraham Flexner report came out. It detailed what was wrong with the then current medical schools. It also proposed what was to be done to make them to be efficient enough to teach prospective medical students than and now. That is the standards that Flexner wanted are still in place. More specifics later.

The American Medical Assn. claimed that they wanted an unbiased scientific report. Well the fact that the commissioner of the report was the brother of Simon Flexner, the director of the Rockefeller Inst. I strongly doubt that got a man who could be objective. Scientific yes, objective, doubtful.

The standards that the Flexner report came up with are strictly enforced. So much so that if any medical college that does not meet the requirements can not enter in the American Medical College Association. If an American medical student is enrolled in an institution that teaches health care that does not meet the strict stipulations can not be board certified.

The standards according to the American Medical Association is an emphasis on the biomedical base model, laboratories, state of the art equipment and salaried professors.

While these are commendable goals, the actual result was when the 1910 report came out was that the poorer medical schools that couldn't afford the new conditions were forced to shut down. They simply did not have enough money to become par with the schools that were able to comply.

There was also another issue and this comes to the reason I chose to put this into Alternative Health. Under Flexner all forms of unorthodox healings were greatly discouraged. For example, Hahnamann University in Philadelphia was originally a homeopathic facility. Somewhat fortunate for them they were not forced to close down like many of the other alternative medical schools, hospitals were. It was forced to forego its homeopathic curricula. This to me is quite ironic, since Hahnamann was named after Samual Hahnamann, the founder of Homeopathy.

The Flexner report was discouraging to althealth because it emphasized allopathic medicine to the detriment of every other form of medical methods. With only one model that was accepted, everything else that did not fit it was considered at the very least suspect.

This to me would be okay if it weren't for that fact that the Flexner report is still influencing present and future medical students and physicians. On the positive side the Flexner report said high scientific standards. On the negative it greatly narrowed what is considered valid health care in the US, especially among health care practioners that belong to the American Medical Assn. The largest medically related professional organization in the US.

Lastly I wonder if the Flexner report has influenced other nation's health care and if so, how and how much.

Web Site: 1910 Flexner report still influencing US Health Care



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