Tenured pundits: Modern medicine needs Darwinism
|April 19, 2011||Posted by News under Darwinism, Medicine|
On the other hand,
… modern medicine owes nothing to Darwinism. For one thing, mortality from infectious diseases in the West began declining before 1859, due in large part to public health measures such as the provision of sewage disposal systems and safe water supplies.10 It also included personal hygiene, as the story of Hungarian obstetrician Ignác Semmelweis illustrates.While working in an Austrian hospital in 1847, Semmelweis noticed that the death rate of mothers from puerperal fever was much higher in wards run by medical students than in wards run by midwives. He also noticed that the medical students would go directly from the morgue tothe obstetric ward without washing their hands. By simply requiring the medical students to wash their hands in a chlorine solution, Semmelweis reduced mortality from 30 percent to less than 2 percent.
The modern practice of immunization also originated without any help from Darwinism. Before 1800, smallpox was a serious and often fatal disease. In the 1790s, English physician Edward Jenner found that by vaccinating people with cowpox, a much milder disease, he could immunizethem against smallpox. The worldwide elimination of smallpox in the twentieth century has been one of the most spectacular success stories in modern medicine. Yet Darwinism had nothing to do with it.
Darwinists claim that their theory is needed to deal with viruses such as influenza that “evolve” from year to year. But the preparation of flu vaccines depends on techniques from the fields of virology, immunology, and biochemistry—not evolutionary biology.
– Jonathan Wells, Politically Incorrect Guide to Darwinism and Intelligent Design (Regnery, 2006), p. 74.
Could modern medicine be described as a revolt against Darwinism?