This anniversary book gives an animated description of the first one hundred years of the Swiss Society of Dermatology and Venereology (SSDV – SGDV). The approximately 60 authors write from the subjective perspective of the contemporary witness and thus create a vibrant picture of their field and the times in which we live. “Spirit and Soul of Swiss Dermatology and Venereology 1913 – 2013” is therefore an ideal companion to the medical history book “Dermatologie und Venerologie in der Schweiz – ein historischer Rückblick” (2002 Editions Alphil, ISBN 2-940235-08-2), published in 2003 by the SSDV – SGDV for its 90th anniversary.
The anniversary edition for the centennial is written in English in order to make the history of the SSDV – SGDV accessible to a larger international public. The introductory chapter is written in all four national languages (German, French, Italian, and Romansh) and also translated into English. It is followed by chapters about the university and non-university public dermatology and venereology departments, the memoirs of those presidents still living, and the depiction of the numerous sub-disciplines of dermatology. Further important chapters include a large contribution on the beginnings of dermatological research in Switzerland, a series of pieces on medical education and continuing education, and finally an overview of healthcare politics in Switzerland. Our friends in Germany, Austria, France, Italy and the USA have provided the outside perspective on Swiss dermatology and venereology in their essays.
All in all an informative and entertaining overview of a very diverse medical specialty has been created, which combines historical facts with dynamic insights into this topical field and the current political healthcare framework.