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Stevens, Rosemary A. (1935–) - History of Medicine

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Rosemary A. Stevens was born on March 18, 1935, in Great Britain, of Anglo-Saxon and Celtic ancestry. Her father was a bank employee; her mother was a full-time homemaker. Stevens was schooled in British state girls’ schools. Her early influences included World War II and the promise of education, which she says was a way of “breaking out.” Seeking a way of understanding power relations and explaining the present, Stevens became interested in English and history. She obtained a bachelor’s degree from St. Hilda’s College, Oxford University, in 1957. In 1959 Stevens earned a diploma in social administration from the University of Manchester. She earned a master’s degree from Oxford in 1961, then a master’s in public health from Yale University in 1963. Stevens’s Ph.D., which she completed at Yale in 1968, was in epidemiology.

Stevens worked as assistant professor of public health at Yale University from 1968 to 1971. She was then promoted to associate professor, and she earned full professor status in 1974. Stevens left Yale in 1976 to work as professor of health systems management and adjunct professor of political science at Tulane University. She served as chair of the department of health systems management from 1977 to 1978. Since 1979 Rosemary Stevens has been at the University of Pennsylvania, as professor of history and sociology of science. She has also served as a senior fellow at the Leonard Davis Institute for Health Economics, as chair of the department of history and sociology of science, as UPS Foundation Professor in the Social Sciences, and, since 1991, as dean and Thomas S. Gates Professor in the School of Arts and Sciences.

Rosemary Stevens has also held many visiting academic appointments, at the London School of Economics and Political Science, at Johns Hopkins University, and at the Brookings Institution. She has worked in administration for the Ministry of Health and the Princess Beatrice Hospital in London, Gaylord Hospital in Wallingford, Connecticut, and for the Government of Tanganyika Commission on Health Services.

Stevens is the author or co-author of six books and the author of over fifty articles. In Sickness and in Wealth: American Hospitals in the Twentieth Century earned Stevens the James A. Hamilton Book Award of the American College of Healthcare Executives for the best book of 1990. As Morris Vogel wrote, the book can be read “as a fascinating history of twentieth-century medicine, as a powerful analysis of contemporary social policy, and as an exploration of American values.” She has written on the hospital as a social and medical institution, on historical changes in internal medicine, and on licensing and education of medical students.

The list of Rosemary Stevens’s professional and consulting appointments is too long to include here. She has served on and chaired many boards and advisory panels, including those for the National Board of Medical Examiners, the American Board of Pediatrics, the Board of Overseers of Dartmouth Medical School, and the Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences. She has served the federal government in this capacity as well, through the Office of Technology Assessment of the U.S. Congress, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the National Institutes of Health, and the U.S. House of Representatives Advisory Panel on National Health Insurance. An international as well as national consultant, Stevens has also served as a consultant to the World Health Organization in Geneva.

The list of Stevens’s awards and fellowships is equally long, and includes membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and fellowships from the Rockefeller Foundation and the Guggenheim Foundation. She is an Alpha Omega Alpha honorary member since 1990, and has received honorary doctorates from the Medical College of Pennsylvania, Rutgers University, Hahnemann University, and Northeast Ohio College of Medicine. Stevens received the 1990 Baxter Foundation Prize for distinction in health services research, the 1990 Welch Medal for distinction in the history of medicine from the American Association for the History of Medicine, the 1990 Arthur Viseltear Award from the American Public Health Association, and the 1990 American Board of Medical Specialties Special Award for unusually important contributions to specialist certification. She has also lectured widely, in and outside the United States.

Rosemary Stevens has been a United States citizen since 1968. Her second marriage is to Jack Barchas. She is the mother of a daughter, Carey, an aircraft mechanic, and a son, Richard, a student nurse. Her interests include antiques, piano, and painting.

Steward, Austin(1793–1865) - Abolitionist, slave, Chronology [next] [back] Stevens, Nettie (Maria)

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