RESEARCH REPORTS: Cover Note
The Medical College of Georgia traces its roots to 1822, when a group of Augusta physicians led by Dr. Milton Antony established the Medical Society of Augusta to enhance and upgrade the training of physicians. Dr. Antony spearheaded the establishment of the State Board of Medical Examiners to regulate medical practice and served as its first president.
In 1826, Dr. Antony began teaching apprentices. Shortly thereafter, he and Dr. Joseph Adams Eve received a state charter to establish a Medical Academy of Georgia. The Academy's founding faculty—Dr. Antony and Dr. Ignatius P. Garvin—as well as the dean, Lewis D. Ford, opened the Academy in 1828. Its first seven students enrolled in a one-year course of lectures and clinical training, leading to the bachelor of medicine degree. The curriculum was expanded to two years in 1829, culminating in a doctor of medicine degree. The school's name was changed to the Medical College of Georgia (MCG) in 1833.
In 1834 MCG faculty began a campaign urging medical schools nationwide to adopt uniform entrance requirements and longer sessions. This campaign led to conventions of medical school representatives in 1846 and 1847, which resulted in the formation of the American Medical Society. The American Medical Society later became the American Medical Association, with its first annual meeting in Baltimore in 1848.
MCG has a strong history of improving not only teaching standards but research standards as well. Research breakthroughs at MCG have included a cure for pellagra and the groundwork for such breakthroughs as fertility pills, birth-control pills, and beta-blocking drugs for cardiac arrhythmias. Today, the university is building on that reputation, focusing resources in five umbrella areas: cancer, cardiovascular diseases, neurologic diseases, infection/inflammation, and biomedical technology.
Likewise, its teaching initiatives have grown to encompass the full range of health care needs. The school has evolved into a full health sciences university, with Schools of Allied Health Sciences, Dentistry, Graduate Studies, Medicine, and Nursing.