Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine

Hamburg, Germany

Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine

Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine (Bernhard-Nocht-Institut für Tropenmedizin) (BNITM) in Hamburg is Germany's largest institution for tropical medicine, with a workforce of about 250 people in Hamburg. It is member of the Leibniz-Association.

The cholera epidemic of the year 1892 claimed thousands of lives and prompted the Senate and Parliament of the City of Hamburg to reform the health care system. The Tropical Medicine Institute was founded with the support of the Imperial Government to research ship and tropical diseases and to train ship and colonial physicians. In 1893, the naval physician Bernhard Nocht was introduced to the newly created position of port physician. For the medical care of seamen suffering from internal diseases, he was also given a department in the St. Georg General Hospital. Contrary to the plans of the bacteriologist Robert Koch, Nocht established Hamburg in 1899 as the location for an institute for the research of tropical diseases, since "due to overseas traffic there are many people with treatment needs at this point". On 1 October 1900 the "Institute for Maritime and Tropical Diseases" with 24 employees was opened in the former administration building of the naval hospital at Hamburg's Landungsbrücken. Since 2006, the inpatient care has taken place at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf.

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