Director of the Institute for Women’s Health at UCL and Co-Director of
the Department of Health Policy Research Unit in Maternal Health and
Care, University of Oxford. I spent 100% of my time on academic
The Institute has direct links to a rich history of women’s health care and rights dating back over more than a century. This tradition provides an inspiring background to our endeavours to make a difference in women’s health.
Elizabeth Garrett Anderson
Elizabeth Garrett Anderson was a pioneer of women’s rights in medicine and society. Born in 1836, she made history in 1865 by becoming the first woman to become a doctor in the UK despite vigorous opposition from the medical establishment. She was also Britain’s first woman mayor and an early suffragette. She fought tirelessly for women to have access to high quality health care and for the right of women to practise medicine. In 1872, at the age of 36, she founded the first British hospital for women in London – which became the Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Hospital after her death and is now based at UCLH.
University College London (UCL)
Founded in 1826, UCL was the first university in England to admit students of any race, class or religion. It was also the first university to welcome women on equal terms with men and the first English university to offer the systematic teaching of medicine, law and architecture. UCL has retained this strong tradition of equal opportunity for all whilst consolidating its status as one of the world’s leading universities.
The Obstetric Hospital, Huntley Street, London
The Obstetric Hospital on Huntley Street was founded in 1923 as part of UCH. It was the birthplace of many historic innovations in women’s health including the development of ergotamine, which has saved millions of lives worldwide by preventing and treating haemorrhage associated with childbirth. The Fetal Medicine department pioneered the treatment of Rhesus babies, which has become one of the most important life-saving interventions for newborns in the last 100 years. The Neonatal Unit at UCLH, founded in the 1960s, was one of the world’s first dedicated intensive care units for newborn babies, and has initiated developments in neonatal care which are now used throughout the world.
Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Hospital
In 1999 as part of NHS reorganisation the Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Hospital merged with the Obstetric Hospital at UCLH and moved to Huntley Street. Gynaecology services have recently moved to the 13th floor of the new state-of-the-art University College London Hospital. Obstetric services will also move in 2008 when phase 2 of the new hospital build is complete and the Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Wing is opened.
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