The Legacy of the Flexner Report: How a High School Teacher Changed the Course of Medical Education
Part I: A Brief History and an Examination of the Report
With COVID many people have become far more wary of the medical field. A massive push for vaccination, suppression of possible therapeutics, and the evocation of science akin to religious zealotry have brought attention to the parochial, arrogant nature of medicine.
The shiny gleam that once encapsulated the field of medicine is waning, and as people become more distrustful we may wonder how such a disaster came to be.
Before the practice of medicine comes the teaching of medicine, and it is the teaching of medicine via medical schools that attention should be laid upon. Therefore, what could have happened to these medical schools that may have led the field of medicine astray?
Well, it appears that the blame may lay at the foot of a former high school teacher named Abraham Flexner and his release of a report titled Medical Education in the United States and Canada, or The Flexner Report for short. This book-length report, released in 1910, has been considered the landmark piece that forever altered the course of medical schools and the teaching of medicine here in the US and beyond.
So, how could a former high school teacher play such a massive influence on the field of medicine? Let’s find out.