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Immunology

Immunology is a branch of MEDICINE that studies the body's ability to defend itself from foreign substances, cells and tissues, especially DISEASE-causing organisms, and seeks means of controlling that ability.

Article

Tommy Douglas and Eugenics

Tommy Douglas — the father of socialized medicine in Canada and one of the country’s most beloved figures — once supported eugenic policies. In 1933, he received a Master of Arts in sociology from McMaster University for his thesis, “The Problems of the Subnormal Family.” In the thesis, Douglas recommended several eugenic policies, including the sterilization of “mental defectives and those incurably diseased.” His ideas were not unique, as two Canadian provinces (and 32 American states) passed sexual-sterilization legislation in the 1920s and 1930s. However, by the time Douglas became premier of Saskatchewan in 1944, he had abandoned his support for eugenic policies. When Douglas received two reports that recommended legalizing sexual sterilization in the province, he rejected the idea.

Article

Royal Victoria Hospital

Royal Victoria Hospital, Montréal, is a teaching hospital affiliated with McGill University. Its original building on the southern slopes of Mount Royal is the premier Canadian illustration of pavilion-plan hospital architecture.

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Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis (TB) has been known and dreaded since Hippocratic times (460-377 BCE). It was once known as "consumption" and claimed the lives of such famous people as the Brontë sisters, Robert Louis Stevenson and Vivian Leigh.

Article

Wildlife Preserve

A wildlife preserve is an area of land or water set aside from at least some forms of development or recreational use, particularly from industrial use, hunting and motorized recreation, to protect wildlife and their habitats.

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Heart Disease

In industrial countries more people die from diseases of the heart and blood vessels than from any other single cause.

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Gerontology

Gerontology is the scientific study of AGING and its consequences including psychological, biological, and social changes confronting individuals, the social and economic issues created by growing numbers of older people in a population, and the opportunities older age brings with it.

Macleans

Blood Substitute Tested

According to medical lore, the ancient Incas were the first to attempt blood transfusions. And over the centuries doctors around the world have pumped everything from beer to urine into hemorrhaging patients.

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Pediatrics

Pediatrics is that branch of MEDICINE concerned with the child, its development, care and diseases.

Macleans

Artificial Heart Developed

This article was originally published in Maclean’s magazine on January 25, 1999. Partner content is not updated.

Before the end of this year, Ottawa heart surgeon Dr. Wilbert Keon hopes to open the chest of a patient whose heart has reached a state of "terminal failure" and install a shiny plastic-encased object a little larger than a man’s fist.

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Blindness and Visual Impairment

In Canada the largest agency serving blind and visually impaired persons is The Canadian National Institute for the Blind. CNIB has 9 geographic service divisions with over 60 regional offices, and the CNIB Library for the Blind serves all areas of Canada.

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Indigenous Peoples' Medicine in Canada

Since time immemorial Indigenous peoples in Canada have been using plants and other natural materials as medicine. Plant medicines are used more frequently than those derived from animals. In all, Indigenous peoples have identified over 400 different species of plants (as well as lichens, fungi and algae) with medicinal applications. Medicine traditions — the plants used, the ailments treated, protocols for harvesting and application, and modes of preparation — are similar for Indigenous peoples across the country. In many Indigenous communities, there are recognized specialists trained in traditional medicine, and their practice often reflects spiritual aspects of healing as well as physical outcomes. In many cases, the therapeutic properties of Indigenous medicines are attributable to particular compounds and their effects on the body, but in other instances, their application is little understood by western medical practitioners. Within Indigenous communities, specific methods of harvesting and preparation of medicines are considered intellectual property of particular individuals or families.

Article

SARS in Canada

Canada experienced an outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2003. Most of the infections originated in Toronto hospitals. The outbreak led to the quarantine of thousands, killed 44 people and took an economic toll on Toronto. It also exposed the country’s ill-prepared health-care system. Confusion around SARS fuelled an uptick in anti-Asian and anti-immigrant sentiment.

Click here for definitions of key terms used in this article.

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Virus

Virus, the smallest form of life (20-300 nanometres), is structurally and functionally unique. Their size is such that they do not contain enough genetic material to code for the proteins they require for reproduction, nor do they have ribosomes needed to synthesize these proteins.