500 Years of healthcare in Haarlem
From the 24th of June the healthcare of Haarlem is the center of our museum. It is about the transformation of healthcare from the middle ages to the current day. About Surgeons, Haarlemmer olie, the black plague and the rise of specialists. With extensive attention to the history of Haarlems hospitals, especially the St. Elisabeths Gasthuis, where the museum is established.
In these times university graduate doctors were scarce and only available to the rich. Whilst the rich were treated at home, the poor needed to go to the guesthouses. Back then the black plague was seen as a punishment from God. The responsibility of the healthcare lies with the church, the rich, families and the surrounding environment. At the end of 19th century the responsibility shifted to the government and the Netherlands became a welfare state. The healthcare continued to get better, slowly at first and then more rapidly after the second world war. The major changes in health care were due to the combination of an increase in hygiene and clean drinking water. The exhibition highlights what was important both in the past as well as today, with a tendency towards home care and informal care from neighbours and families.