Halsted R. Holman and the Struggle for the Soul of Medicine

This book describes the major changes in American medicine and healthcare that took place during 100 years of efforts to deliver the fruits of biomedical science to all. The story is told through the life of Halsted Reid Holman, an icon in American academic medicine and arguably one of the most notable academic leaders in the US. His story is extraordinary, human, and inspiring.

A charismatic figure, a beloved doctor, brilliant bench scientist, innovative teacher, mentor to many leaders in American medicine and leader of one of the world’s great academic medical centers, Holman was a change agent who challenged orthodoxy, injustice and arrogance and took others to a vision they could not imagine. He was a major figure shaping and reacting to the rise of molecular medicine and all the changes in US healthcare: the beginning of Medicare/Medicaid, the growth of the health insurance industry and the medical–industrial complex, health maintenance organizations, the disappearance of municipal hospitals and chronic disease and mental health hospitals, widening health disparities, Obama’s Affordable Care Act, and the tension between health care as a basic human right and as a business. Holman’s responses were singular, humanitarian, principled, action-oriented, data-driven, collaborative with patients, and a departure from a worldview that knowledge and technology will solve all ills and that only experts can see the truth.


Matthew H. Liang is Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. A founding faculty of General Medicine and Primary Care at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Clinical Effectiveness Program at Harvard’s School of Public Health, he is recipient of the Lee C. Howley Sr. Prize, the American College of Rheumatology Award of Distinction for Clinical Research, the Kirkland Scholar Award, the Wallace Epstein Award, and the Marian Ropes Award, among others.

Edward R. Lew is a graduate of Middlesex Community College and is completing a degree in Legal Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He has worked as a Research Analyst at the US Department of Veterans Affairs for a nationwide clinical trial in suicide prevention, and he aspires to serve in government to empower oppressed groups and individuals.

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ISBN: 1-5275-7843-7

ISBN13: 978-1-5275-7843-2

Release Date: 25th January 2022

Pages: 150

Price: £61.99

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