The 100-year activity (1906-2006) of the Medical Department of the Transylvanian Museum Association

Written by Péter Mihály, Péter H. Mária

The Hungarian intellectuals from Transylvania went through a long struggle in the time of the Habsburg monarchy until the authorities approved the establishment of a Transylvanian museum and of an association of scientists. Finally count Mikó Imre succeeded to accomplish this old dream in 1859. The Transylvanian Museum Association was founded at Kolozsvár. In 1861 it became necessary to separate the scientific meetings to historical and natural science departments. Medical science belonged to the second department. In 1876, they started publishing a journal entitled Értesítő. Because of the fast development of the science this Department was split in two in 1906. The main activity of the departments was the organization of scientific meetings, where scientific presentations, case-studies, discussions and debates took place. Yearly Congresses were started in 1906, held by the different departments, the number of which had increased to four in the meantime. Congresses were organized in different Transylvanian towns. World War I. and the change of domination first hindered, and then interrupted the activity of the Association. In 1922 the meetings were restarted. After 1940 the meetings, congresses, and the edition of the Értesítő continued. After the new change of domination (1944) the activity of the Association slowly declined, until it was completely forbidden by the authorities in 1950. The activity of the Association was restarted in 1990, after a forced break of 40-44 years. The official residence of the Medical Department was moved to Marosvásárhely. Since 1990 specialized group-meetings and extension courses were held instead of the common Congresses. The most important events in the activity of the Department are the annual conferences organized in different Transylvanian towns. Between 1906 and 1948, 433 meetings were held, 1034 presentations were given, and the Értesítő published 493 of them on 7672 pages. And 1319 presentations were published on 6057 pages between 1990 and 2006. In these 100 years the Medical and Pharmaceutical Department has significantly contributed not only to the development of medicine and pharmacy, but also to the improvement of the quality of health care, and to the public healths education.

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