Philosophy of medicine in austria

Abstract
It seems impossible to completely cover the field indicated by the title of this report because of the many contributions of individual physicians and non-physicians to problems of the philosophy of medicine in Austria, and to their solution. The main trends are rooted in historic developments and in the current problems of medicine and health care, which are similar world-wide. In Austria famous names like empress Maria Theresia or the physician Ignaz Semmelweis have to be mentioned in connection with the development of the ideas of a philosophy of medicine. In recent times again influential and well-known persons in related fields of medicine and health care are Austrians. However, the main line of new developments goes mostly unseen by the public: activities in medical ethics with the goal to humanize health care, carried on by groups of young physicians, biomedical engineers and students.
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