20 April 2019

20th April 1745 - Philippe Pinel was born

Philippe Pinel was born on 20th April 1745. He trained to be a doctor but even after moving to Paris found it difficult to find a position and gave lessons in mathematics to make ends meet. He was a humble and kind man. Then after the French Revolution in 1793 he was appointed as the doctor in charge at the Bicetre, a place where the mentally ill were held and treated in dark dungeons like animals in a zoo. He remained there only about a year and a half, but with the nurse Jean-Baptiste Pussin, he abolished the chains and freed many former patients. He treated them with love and kindness and many returned to the outside world. He was then appointed to Salpêtrière in 1795, where he continued to improve the living conditions of patients. He develops what he calls moral treatment. Love and kindness are the 2 greatest medicines known to man. Hatred and chains never cured anyone of anything. His abolition of chains is now one of the founding myths of French psychiatry and helped to demystify mental illness.

Thankyou to Wikipedia April 20th for the date

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