History of Medicine


An Open Access Journal

N.P. Kamenev and psychiatric care in the Tula province in the late 19th and the early 20th century

DOI: 10.17720/2409-5834.v5.1.2018.06f

1Olga V. Tereshkina,
2Elena N. Bobkova
1Tula State University, Medical Institute, Tula
128, Boldin St., Tula 300028, Russia
2 FSAEI HE I.M. Sechenov First MSMU MOH Russia (Sechenov University)
8 Trubetskaya St., building 2, Moscow 119991, Russia

The late 19th to early 20th century saw the development of new scientific views and approaches to the understanding and treatment of mental illnesses, and the need arose to create and introduce into clinical practice new medical institutions for the provision of assistance to the mentally ill. On the one hand, it was necessary to isolate the mentally ill who could pose a danger to themselves and others. On the other hand, the institutions needed for this not only had to provide conditions generally approaching a regular life for most patients, be effective for treatment and economically justified, but also had to follow a humane principle in their attitude towards the mentally ill. The therapeutic-labor (agricultural) psychiatric colony took up this role. One of the largest of them – the Spas-Petelinsky Psychiatric Colony – was opened in 1911 at the Tula provincial zemstvo district. Through the efforts of Kamenev, and under his leadership, a three-tier system for helping the mentally ill was created and successfully functioned in Tula and the Tula province. Several projects developed by him, of a lesser scale, but no less interesting (the project for the Yasno-Polyansky Labor Refuge for mentally ill and nervous patients and mentally handicapped children, the House of Mentally Ill Military Disabled), for various reasons remained unrealized. The article focuses on Tula psychiatric establishments for medical and out-of-hospital care. In all of Kamenev’s projects, in order to accelerate the implementation process and ensure maximum efficiency, there was a tendency to use various local resources, including sociocultural ones. Also, little-known information is provided on Kamenev’s Moscow activities after his departure from Tula. This article is a continuation of the authors’ research work devoted to the study of regional factors in Tula health care in the context of the Russia-wide reforms of the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries.

Keywords: psychiatric care, N.P. Kamenev, Tula provincial zemstvo district, psychiatric institution, psychiatric colony, mentally ill


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