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Live expectancy in Maastricht Period average life expectancy in years* 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 roman period 25 middle ages 25-32 (depents on epidemics) late middle ages 35 References: Mackenbach J. Ziekte in Nederland.Amsterdam: 1680-1700 35-40 Elsevier gezondheidszorg; / Mouria; 2010. 1794 38 Ubachs PJH. Handboek voor de geschiedenis van Limburg. 15 1843 40 Hilversum: Verloren; 2000 p.109 Nationaal kompas Volksgezondheid 1900 51 RIVM Bilthoven versie 4.2 dec 2010 1940 62 Life expectancy Maastricht average 79,1; men 77.0; 1960 74 women 81.0 jaar. 1980 76 Devos I. Mortaliteit en Morbiditeit in Vlaanderen 18e -19e eeuw. 2000 79 Gent: Academia Press; 2006. 2011 79.1 Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek. Historische overlevingstafels voor Nederland (2005). * estimated years based on Dutch and Flemish literature care cannot have been easy in the crowded town with mostly destitute women or men. The Saint Agatha hospice became the small and overcrowded houses, with pools of water everywhere, Table of Saint Agatha or the Table of Saint Aechten. unpaved streets as open sewers and water supplied by wells in Involvement of the Maastricht magistracy in poor relief resulted the town squares. Average life expectancy was between 25 and in the town’s Table of the Holy Ghost. Care for the sick was of 30 years. Like everywhere, child mortality was dreadfully high. secondary importance for these tables for the poor. Life on earth was nothing more than a pilgrimage full of An exception was the care of sufferers of leprosy or the plague. hardships on the road to the eternal salvation of the soul. Leprosy was seen in Maastricht until the end of the middle According to the prevailing Christian teachings people did not a ages. Between 1470 and 1670 the town was regularly struck by great deal of intervention on this journey. severe contagious diseases generally referred to as the plague. However, apart from the actual bubonic plague, this could also be cholera, thyphoid fever or measles. Management of patients Care for the poor, people with contagious with leprosy or the plague consisted of separation and isolation. diseases and the mentally insane Fear of infection, looked upon as a punishment and scourge of God, was the reason for total isolation. Lepers were often For a long time it was customary for the sick and disabled to be committed for life to the leprosarium, or the Lazerij as it was nursed and cared for by relatives. In the growing towns, called in Maastricht. In times of plague epidemics, temporary especially for the poor and ageing among the population, this plague barracks were built to house patients outside residential gradually became impossible. In the course of the sixteenth areas, such as on the Island of Saint Anthony, which was century, an age in which pilgrimages lost most of their situated in the Meuse in those days. There were special plague significance, it became increasingly a task of the hospices to doctors, identifiable by their white staffs. Cell brothers, laymen provide long-term care and housing to the disabled, especially who lived according to the rule of Saint Augustine, were poor and elderly people who had no relatives. To this end the charged with the disposal of the many corpses of plague monastic orders in Maastricht and the town council established victims. so-called ‘tables’. Apart from lepers and plague patients, there was another Spread over the different parishes and neighbourhoods tables category of patients that was not cared for at home. The and hospitals were set up to provide small scale housing, senseless, patients with severe psychiatric or behavioural occasionally in inner courts, usually accommodating twelve disorders, were taken in by cell brothers and later by private


Geneeskundeboek-Opmaak Binnenwerk-ENG.indd
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