History of Medicine


An Open Access Journal

Zemstvo district medicine and charity in Russia

L.E. Gorelova1, T.I. Surovtseva2

1National Institute of Public Health;

2I.M. Sechenov First Moscow Medical University, The Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation

As a result of zemstvo district reforms of 1864, Russia saw the formation of zemstvo district medicine, which played an important role in improving the people’s health. The main objectives of zemstvo district medicine were fighting epidemics, providing vaccinations, and obstetrical and medical help. The organization of medical care was costly. Charity played a huge role. Health issues occupied a prominent place among philanthropists’ activities. Three-quarters of zemstvo medicine’s funding came from private sources, among which funding from merchants took first place. Members of the nobility played a leading role in the development of zemstvo district medicine. Prominent cultural figures held charity concerts in aid of zemstvo district hospitals. Philanthropy provided substantial support for health care and charity institutions (construction and maintenance of hospitals, shelters for the disabled, the elderly and orphans).

Keywords: philanthropy, zemstvo district medicine, charities, shelters, patrons


From 2021

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