History of Medicine


An Open Access Journal

Features of the formation of the health care system in Transbaikal during the period of the Far Eastern Republic

doi: 10.3897/hmj.5.3.32479

Sergey D. Batoev

The formation of the health care system in Transbaikal after the revolution of 1917–1918 had a number of essential features that will be covered in this paper. In 1919, the organization of medical care in Transbaikal retained its pre-revolutionary structure. In connection with the tense political situation in eastern Russia and the serious danger of a military conflict with Japan, in the spring of 1920, a buffer state was created – the Far Eastern Republic (FER). The FER Ministry of Health was established within the framework of the administrative territorial unit. During this period, the Ministry of Health had to fight epidemics, organize medical and sanitary assistance for the population and provide medical support for the People’s Revolutionary Army. Throughout the FER’s territory, free access to all types of medical care (outpatient, inpatient, sanatorium and dental) was introduced for all working groups of the population. From that point on, the state medical authorities consolidated and directed all the FER’s medical and sanitary and veterinary affairs. The Ministry of Health consisted of a civilian and military administrative unit, a medical and veterinary council and local health institutions for the indigenous population. The institutions were involved in the organization of health care and conducted medical and preventive activities and statistical studies. Despite Soviet Russia’s comprehensive assistance, the FER’s economic situation remained dire and unstable. The deficit of skilled health workers and medical institutions prevented the improvement of the health care situation. Radical changes in the public health system became possible only after the accession of Transbaikal to the RSFSR. In the territory of Transbaikal during the existence of the FER (from the spring of 1920 to the end of 1922), the formation of a health care system aimed at providing all segments of the region’s population with access to qualified medical care was an ongoing process.

Keywords history of health care, Transbaikal, Far Eastern Republic, Ministry of Health, medical care


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