Sent to Explore, Conquer and Heal History of the evolution of biomedicine in Oman during the 19th century

Nasser Hammad Al-Azri


During the past four decades, Oman has transformed into a modern state with remarkable changes in all fields, including public health and the provision of medical services. Little attention has been paid so far to the history of the development of biomedicine in Oman. A history of healing practices, just like clinical patient histories, helps to diagnose problems, plan interventions and predict their future within a dynamic context. This study is the first to explore the beginnings and evolution of biomedicine in Oman during the 19th century, categorising it into three eras: from the casual system offered by occasional visiting biomedical practitioners to the more organised, but limited, British military hospital and, finally, to public missionary medical care toward the end of the 19th century. The study concludes by recommending further focus on medical humanities, including the history of medicine, as a contributing factor to improve and sustain the art and practice of medicine within the existing Omani health care system.


Oman; History of medicine; Mission and Missionaries; Colonialism

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Sultan Qaboos University Medical Journal, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Sultan Qaboos University, PO Box 35, Postal Code 123, Al-Khod, Muscat, Oman

ISSN (Print edition): 2075-051X ISSN (Internet edition): 2075-0528

Copyright SQUMJ 2019. This journal and its content is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution No Derivatives 4.0 International license.

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