Our College is 420 years old today!

29 Nov 2019

On 29th November 1599, surgeon Peter Lowe and a small group of surgeons, physicians and apothecaries were granted a charter by King James VI of Scotland.

Our

Today is the College’s birthday.

On 29th November 1599, surgeon Peter Lowe and a small group of surgeons, physicians and apothecaries were granted a charter by King James VI of Scotland. The charter set out the responsibilities of a new institution whose aim would be to improve the standards of healthcare of the people of Glasgow and the west of Scotland. The original charter is written in old Scots and contains 8 key points. Here is a very brief, translated version:

Our members will –

  1. Examine anyone who wants to practice surgery, and if found worthy, authorise them to practice. If they practice without authorisation, they will be fined (40 pounds) or imprisoned.
  2. Attend to anyone hurt, murdered or poisoned etc, and report the case to the Magistrate.
  3. Make statutes for the practice of surgery, for the common good of the people.
  4. Check the qualifications and testimonials of physicians before they can practice medicine.
  5. Supervise and control the sale of drugs in the city (under the pain of confiscation).
  6. Regulate the apothecaries who are allowed to sell dangerous substances (e.g. rat poison, arsenic).
  7. Meet on the first Monday of each month to provide care to the poor, for free.
  8. Be exempt from bearing arms and playing a role in any conflicts etc.

The purpose of the College is fundamentally the same as it has always been.

Its first meeting was attended by only a handful of clinicians, and for many years they met in coffee houses and churches. Senior members mentored new admissions and apprentices, and gradually they were able to develop teaching as well as examination as part of their function. Our archives contain the records of all of these first meetings – by far the most important items in our collections.

#ThisIsWhoWeAre!

Category: Engagement


Share this story:

Latest news and statements

Key priority areas

Workforce Recovery and Transformation
Health services in many parts of the world are over-stretched due to workforce shortages, rising demand for services and difficulties in retaining staff.
Read more
Wellbeing
A healthy healthcare workforce is essential for patient care. When the workforce is exhausted, experiencing burnout, and struggling to balance their work and personal lives, it impacts on everyone.
Read more
Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
We are committed to standing up for equality, diversity and inclusion. We want our College to reflect the diversity in the NHS workforce and in the patients that we care for.
Read more
Climate Change and Sustainability
Climate change has caused great harm to our planet and warnings of increasingly extreme heatwaves, droughts and flooding will all place a significant burden on our health outcomes.
Read more
Health Inequalities
The health inequalities in our society have been both highlighted and exacerbated by the covid pandemic. There is a need to do things differently.
Read more
COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on the lives of healthcare professionals, and the urgent need to learn whilemfocusing on delivering the best care for our patients has been an enormous challenge.
Read more

Topics


Archive


Key links



Contact us

rcpsg@grayling.com
07714307976

Log in

Log in to access your Dashboard, book events, pay your subscriptions and access eLearning material.

Log in

Register an account

New users must register before logging in. You do not need to be a member of the College in order to register.

Register

Help

Having difficulty registering or logging in? Forgotten your username or password?

Get Help