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Historic medical technology on display in Cleveland

By Daryl V. Rowland
Special to the Beacon Journal

CLEVELAND: The Dittrick Medical History Center and Museum will celebrate the opening of the M. Donald Blaufox Hall of Diagnostic Instruments today with a special lecture by Dr. Joel D. Howell.

The event marks the reopening of the Dittrick’s collection of historic diagnostic instruments in the museum’s balcony display area.

With the 2008 donation of the M. Donald Blaufox collection of stethoscopes and blood pressure measurement devices and a complete refurbishment of their exhibits on this topic, the museum — part of Case Western Reserve University — formally is dedicating the Hall of Diagnostic Instruments.

Opening comments will be offered by Jim Edmonson and Don Blaufox. Then Howell, the Victor Vaughan professor of history of medicine at the University of Michigan, will explore the impact of technology upon diagnosis and the dynamics of the physician-patient relationship.

Howell is author of Technology in the Hospital: Transforming Patient Care in the Early Twentieth Century (1995) and has written widely on the use of medical technology. He has explored the question of why American medicine became so wedded to the use of technology.

The lecture begins at 6 p.m. in the Ford Auditorium, with a reception to follow in the galleries of the museum, at Allen Memorial Medical Library, 11000 Euclid Ave., Cleveland.

The Dittrick museum is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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