Florentine hospitals respond to the epidemic in 1630
Places of pain and piety
In Florence and the rest of its territories, hospitals were immediately set up to allow for the isolation of patients during the epidemic of 1630. The city’s two hospitals were San Francesco and San Miniato. In addition to a lack of hygiene, the hospitals also had dire shortages of food, water and clothing. The few clothes that were available were often burned to avoid spreading infection. Yet, those who were admitted to these special hospitals could consider themselves lucky. The disease was not immediately conquered, yet, those who were treated in these facilities often had a better chance of surviving then those who were not admitted. Donato Bisogni, who managed the two Florentine structures, sent a note to the Health Minister confirming the number of deaths that took place up until December 20, 1630. He recorded the presence of 2,503 men and 3,383 women which made a total of 5,860 patients. Of these—2,886 had died, while 2,220 were in convalescence. The rest had been discharged.