HertzlerI outlined for the new residents how we got to the place we are today (in my opinion). Over the next couple of posts, I will try to put into words what was in the Powerpoint.

My history began with the story of Arthur Hertzler. Dr Hertzler (pictured above) He was known as  the “Horse and Buggy Doctor”.He attended Southwest Kansas College and then Northwestern University Medical School. Since the average country physicians was not as well educated, Dr Hertzler’s private practice in Halstead, Mo would have been unusual in its own right. The fact that he maintained this practice and taught pathology, histology, surgery and gynecology at the University Medical College in Kansas City and University of Kansas School of Medicine was amazing. his fame, though, was from his book, the Horse and Buggy Doctor, written in 1938 about his practice. In it was a personal account of his experiences and it was an instant best seller. It offers a discription of the quintessential “country doctor”.

Darly Ward Darley was not a family physician, but was also innfluential in the speciaties founding. He had his A. B. and M.D. from University of Colorado and after a period of private practice in Denver he went on to become president of the AAMC in 1952 and president of the University of Colorado in 1953. In 1949 he wrote “The place and training of the General Practitioner”.  In it, he says “This doctor-a physicianin the fullest sense of the word-should be interested in and qualified to function as a healthCounsellor and a health coordinator for a given individual from birth to death. Personal preventive medicine, as well as community health, should claim a great deal of his effort. Ability to function effectively in the prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of emotionally and personality determined illnesses should be of the first importance. General diagnostic ability predicates that he will recognize his limitations and know when specialist consultation or referral is indicated. The need for proficiency in the therapeutics of the common medical conditions should be apparent. His need for surgical ability other than diagnostic will depend upon the locale of his practice and his proximity to surgical consultants and facilities.” In essence, he discribed the need for and the training of the prototypical family physician.

In 1965, the Millis commission further discribed the need for generalist training and outlined the barriers to care. As a result of these and other great men and women, the American Board of Family Practice was founded in 1969 with 15 pilot training programs. The training was notable in its ininclusion of behavioral sciences and its requirement for recertification.

In upcoming posts I will describe the formation of USA Family Medicine, and the path to health reform and the role that our programs have played.