Thomas Schlich, MD, PhD, James McGill Professor in the History of Medicine and Chair of the Department of Social Studies of Medicine at McGill University is among the 48 new Fellows announced by the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (CAHS) for 2023.  

Dr. Schlich is a preeminent historian of modern medicine and science. In his work he has examined the rationale for surgery—why surgeons open the body — and the techniques they develop to do so. Combining the perspectives of history with science and technology studies, Dr. Schlich’s work elucidates the introduction of innovative ideas and techniques, including organ transplants, metal implants in the treatment of fractures, the pathways to the contemporary development of minimally invasive surgery, and, most recently, the origins and use of face masks to prevent infections. 

Election to Fellowship in the Academy is considered one of the highest honours for individuals in the Canadian health sciences community and carries with it a covenant to serve the Academy and the future well-being of the health sciences irrespective of the Fellow’s specific discipline.

“As a historian of medicine, I feel especially honoured to be inducted as a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of the Health Sciences,” says Dr. Schlich. “I think that the Arts and Social Sciences have a special contribution to make to our understanding of health and medicine. As an MD and historian, and head of the Department of Social Studies of Medicine, it has been my privilege to help build bridges between the two intellectual and academic cultures. I am looking forward to continuing this trajectory with the CAHS.” 

Congratulations Dr. Schlich! 

With source files from the CAHS