About this event

  • Date and time Thu 18 Nov 2021 from 11:30am to 12:45pm
  • Location Online
  • Organised by Senior Fellows Forum

Dr Mike Hinton, author of Victory over Disease: Resolving the Medical Crisis in the Crimean War, 1854–1856, joins the Retired Fellows Society to give the lecture 'Victory over disease in the Crimean War: A reassessment'.

The catastrophic collapse in the health of the British Army during the winter of 1854/55 was followed by a gradual improvement starting early in the New Year. This was due principally to the progressive enhancement in the troops’ living standards – by the provision of adequate food, clothing, fuel and shelter. These improvements, coupled with the development of the facilities for health care in Crimea, were combined with more satisfactory arrangements for the evacuation of invalids from Crimea to Turkey and beyond.

The principal problems that beset the Army were at the front, not in Turkey, and it was there that matters were rectified. Specifically, the improvements in survival of patients at Scutari can be largely explained by an improved prognosis for the men selected for evacuation.

There is little tangible evidence that Florence Nightingale and the Sanitary Commissioners, who were sent out by the government to investigate matters on the spot, significantly influenced the improvement in the health of the main Army in Crimea. Rather, it represented the involvement of people in many walks of life who worked, possibly unwittingly, for a common purpose, and with such gratifying results.

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Key speakers

Dr Mike Hinton

Former reader in Veterinary Public Health

Speaker's biography

Following graduation in Veterinary Science from Bristol University in 1966, Dr Mike Hinton spent forty years working principally as an academic and a civil servant, retiring in 2006.


His fascination in the Crimean campaign was kindled during the 1990s when he discovered that one of his 2x great grandfathers served though out the war. Dr Hinton was a Reader in Veterinary Public Health at the time and his principal research interest was infectious diseases and, clearly, this category of disease shaped the course of the campaign.


After retirement, he studied for a second PhD degree under Professor Andrew Lambert at King’s College London and the resulting thesis formed the basis of a book entitled Victory over Disease: Resolving the Medical Crisis in the Crimean War, 1854–1856.


Dr Hinton is a member of the Crimean War Research Society, Victorian Military Society, Society of Genealogists, Veterinary History Society, and the Royal Society of Medicine. He has published over sixty articles on various aspects of the Crimean War in the journals of these, and other societies. His personal research now concentrates more on the family relationships of participants and the memorials, surviving or otherwise, in churches, cemeteries and public places.


View the programme here

Registration, tea and coffee
Welcome and introduction

Chair: Dr David Shanson, Committee Member, Retired Fellows Society, Royal Society of Medicine

Victory over disease in the Crimean War: A reassessment

Dr Mike Hinton, Author of Victory over Disease: Resolving the Medical Crisis in the Crimean War

Close of meeting followed by lunch

For those who have pre-booked



Special rates for difficult times  

The RSM wishes to offer healthcare professionals continued learning opportunities during the coronavirus pandemic. The RSM’s weekly COVID-19 Series webinars remain free of charge, while there will be small charges to register for other online education. These fees enable the RSM to continue its programme of activities and apply during the course of the pandemic. 

Registration for this meeting will close 24 hours prior to the start time.

If UK government guidelines and restrictions change, the format of this event will be updated to comply, and all delegates will be notified via email.