Norman Bethune

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THE MAKING OF A HERO
Henry Norman Bethune (March 4, 1890 – November 12, 1939)was a Canadian physician and medical innovator. Bethune is best known for his service in war time medical units during the Spanish Civil War and with the Communist Eighth Route Army during the Second Sino-Japanese War. He developed the first mobile blood-transfusion service in Spain in 1936.A Communist, he wrote that wars were motivated by profits, not principles. SPANISH CIVIL WAR

In 1936, the Spanish Civil War broke out. Bethune accepted an invitation from the Committee to Aid Spanish Democracy to head the Canadian Medical Unit in Madrid. He joined the Mackenzie-Papineau Battalion which was composed of Canadian communists and other leftists and set off for Madrid on November 3, 1936. A frequent cause of death on the battlefield is medical shock brought on by loss of blood. A casualty whose wounds do not appear life-threatening suddenly dies. Bethune conceived the idea of administering blood transfusions on the spot. He developed the world's first mobile medical unit. The unit contained dressings for 500 wounds, and enough supplies and medicine for 100 operations. Bethune organized a service to collect blood from donors and deliver it to the battlefront, thereby saving countless lives. Bethune's work in Spain in developing mobile medical units was a precursor to the later development of Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH) units SECOND SINO-JAPANESE WAR

In January 1938 Bethune travelled to Yan'an of Shanxi province in China. There he joined the Chinese Communists led by Mao Zedong in their struggle against the Japanese invaders.In China, Bethune performed emergency battlefield surgical operations on war casualties and established training for doctors, nurses and orderlies.He did not distinguish between casualties.Stationed with the Communist Party of China's Eighth Route Army in the midst of the Second Sino-Japanese War, Bethune cut his finger while operating on a soldier. Probably...
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