Monday, May 14, 2007


Ignaz Semmelweis was mentioned in a Houston Chronicle article about Texas Senate Bill 288, which would make the nosocomial infection rates of every hospital in the state available to the public.

The relevant section:

It's been a long struggle. About 1840, Hungarian obstetrician Ignaz Semmelweis acted on a hunch and ordered his medical students to wash their hands with chlorinated lime before examining mothers-to-be.

The maternal death rate dropped from 12 percent to 1 percent within two years. His findings triggered such a backlash from colleagues that he resigned and eventually died, of a hospital-acquired infection, in a mental hospital after suffering a nervous breakdown.

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