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Medical Historian

Chronicle the milestones of medicine throughout the ages.

What does a Medical Historian do?

A Medical Historian documents prominent figures and developments in the medical world. If you’re interested in this career, you should know about the great debate in the medical history world: Should you be a trained Historian specializing in medicine, or a trained medical professional with an interest in history? The latter usually comes in the form of a retired Physician looking to put down in writing the advances they’ve witnessed in their profession and the notable Physicians they’ve encountered in the workplace.

But professional Historians would point out that they themselves wouldn’t be allowed to practice medicine in their retirement without sufficient training, so why should Physicians be allowed to become Historians? There are, however, remedies to this situation: Journals, magazines, and Book Publishers who are looking for Medical Historians often provide access, or information leading, to a collaborative environment where Historians can use their techniques and writing skills and Physicians can use their medical knowledge, and they can document history together.

In any case, your work as a Medical Historian involves a significant amount of research, reporting, interviewing, and writing, regardless of your background. You should be very interested in medicine, know how the procedures you’re reporting on work (this is where access to a trained Physician comes in handy), and be very interested in history, people, and documentation.