Talented doctors and new methods: Main Archive Directorate on how the renowned Sklifosovsky Institute started

October 20

The Moscow Main Archive Directorate holds a collection of documents related to the history of the Sklifosovsky Research Institute of Emergency Medicine, whose main mission is to save lives.

The institute is located in the building that used to accommodate a charity hospital founded by Count Nikolai Sheremetev on 28 June 1792, when he turned 41. After his wife, Praskovya Kovalyova-Zhemchugova, died in 1803, the count made changes to the original project and dedicated the building to his wife’s memory. The charity hospital, renamed Sheremetev Hospital in the 1850s, comprised a poorhouse for 100 old and disabled people and a free hospital for 50 patients. Between 1860 and 1909, its outpatient unit provided medical care to 1,858,000 people.

On 18 July 1919, the former charity hospital started operating as an ambulance station. Several months later, on 15 October, the Central Emergency Care Hospital opened in the building. In 1923, the Institute of Emergency Medicine was founded at the hospital and named after outstanding surgeon and scientist Nikolai Sklifosovsky. The city’s ambulance station became part of the institute, which eventually developed standards for administering first aid.

Since its founding, the institute boasted remarkable talents among its staff, including doctors Grigory Gershtein, Vasily Krasintsev, Pyotr Solovov and many others. A very important period in the history of the institute was linked to surgeon Sergei Yudin. He was the first doctor in the world to perform a transfusion of cadaveric blood (blood that does not coagulate) on a patient who was bleeding to death. The research in that area conducted by the institute saved many Soviet soldiers during the Great Patriotic War. Sergei Yudin was also among the pioneers of modern anaesthesiology.


During the war, the institute treated not only wounded Red Army soldiers but civilian patients as well. The institute’s director, the colonel of medical service Sergei Yudin, often travelled to the frontline to perform surgeries in the field. The mobile fracture table he designed was used by many military hospitals. In 1942, the doctor was awarded the Stalin Prize for his achievements in field surgery.

Sergei Yudin worked at the Institute of Emergency Medicine until his death in 1954. Several years later, a memorial plaque commemorating the talented doctor was installed at the request of the institute’s senior management.

Two centuries and ten years later: The anniversary of the Sklifosofsky Institute’s first building

Today, the Sklifosovsky Research Institute of Emergency Medicine is the largest multidisciplinary centre for emergency medical care and research in Russia.

Source: mos.ru

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