Ministry of Health (Soviet Union)

Ministry of Health (Soviet Union)
Ministry of Health of the USSR
Министерство здравоохранения СССР
Coat of arms of the Soviet Union.svg
All ministry seals of the Soviet Union used the Soviet coat of arms
Agency overview
Formed 16 July 1923
Preceding agency General Directorate of Public Health of the Russian Empire (1917)
Dissolved 15 November 1991
Superseding agency Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation (1992)
Jurisdiction Union of Soviet Socialist Republics
Headquarters Moscow, RSFSR, Soviet Union

The Ministry of Health (MOH) of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) (Министерство здравоохранения СССР), formed on 15 March 1946, was one of the most important government offices in the Soviet Union. It was formerly (until 1946) known as the People's Commissariat for Health (Народный комиссариат здравоохранения). The Ministry, at the all-Union level, was established on 6 July 1923, after the signing of the Treaty on the Creation of the USSR, and was, in turn, based upon the People's Commissariat for Health of the RSFSR formed in 1917. The Ministry was led by the Minister of Health, prior to 1946 a Commissar, who was nominated by the Chairman of the Council of Ministers and confirmed by the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet, and was a member of the Council of Ministers.


Duties and responsibilities

The main duties of the ministry was to develop and to prepare these for legislation and to maintain a decent level of health organisation in the USSR. The ministry missariat monitored and supervised the application of standards and measures to improve Soviet health care. According to the July 1936 decree establishing the People's Commissariat for Health, the commissariat had control over all financial assets related to, or linked, to health care. As such, the Ministry controlled all financial functions regarding health. It coordinated medical personnel all over the country, but also local council deputies.[1] MOH was obliged to take active measures against deficiencies in the health care system, and to further develop and implement measures to improve it.[2]

The MOH, with the help of other ministries and Soviet institutions, was responsible for the construction of new medical institutions around the country. Maintenance of hospital and other medical institutions were carried out by the MOH and the State Committee for Construction.[2] According to the Regulations on the Ministry of Health of the USSR, MOH was responsible for maintenance and the construction of public health care services, and organising and conducting forensic medical and forensic psychiatric examination and establishing public pharmaceutical services. It was also main assigned to develop and publish guidelines on organising and improving curative and preventive care, maternal and child health and to oversee the formulation of therapeutic and preventive work in health care.[3]

The competence of the MOH within the jurisdiction of the USSR was periodically reviewed by the Council of Ministers.[3]


The Ministry of Health was a all-union ministry which ment that the ministry controlled the fifteen ministries of health of the union republics.[4] The union health ministries, in turn, were in charge of the autonomous oblasts and district health departments. The union ministries, along with the oblasts and the district health departments, were in control of the public hospitals and medicine in their area.[5]


A July 1936 decree by the Central Executive Committee and the Council of People's Commissars established the People's Commissariat for Health. Grigory Kaminsky, having served as People's Commissar for Health of the RSFSR, became the first commissar of the all-union commissariat for health. Kaminsky was arrested in 1938 after his speech in 1937 which denounced the ongoing stalinist repression in the country (Great Purge). In a very short period of time since the formation of the commissariat, the diseases and viruses which had for a long-time been a major problem had been eliminated.[1] In 1946, the People's Commissariat for Health was renamed Ministry of Health.[6]

Commissars and ministers

The following persons headed the Commissariat/Ministry as commissars (narkoms), ministers, and deputy ministers of the Soviet time:

Name Took office Left office Duration
People's Commissar for Health of the USSR
Kaminsky, GrigoryGrigory Kaminsky 01936-07-20 20 July 1936 01937-06-26 26 June 1937 &100000000000000000000000 years, &10000000000000341000000341 days
Boldyrev, MikhailMikhail Boldyrev 01937-08-02 2 August 1937 01938-07-16 16 July 1938 &100000000000000000000000 years, &10000000000000348000000348 days
Miterev, GeorgeGeorge Miterev 01939-09-08 8 September 1939 01946-03-15 15 March 1946 &100000000000000060000006 years, &10000000000000188000000188 days
Minister of Health of the USSR
Miterev, GeorgeGeorge Miterev 01946-03-19 19 March 1946 01947-02-17 17 February 1947 &100000000000000000000000 years, &10000000000000335000000335 days
Smirnov, YefimYefim Smirnov 01947-02-17 17 February 1947 01952-12-09 9 December 1952 &100000000000000050000005 years, &10000000000000296000000296 days
Tretyakov, AndreyAndrey Tretyakov 01953-01-27 27 January 1953 01954-03-01 1 March 1954 &100000000000000010000001 year, &1000000000000003300000033 days
Kovrigina, MariaMaria Kovrigina 01954-03-01 1 March 1954 01959-01-12 12 January 1959 &100000000000000040000004 years, &10000000000000317000000317 days
Kurashov, SergeiSergei Kurashov 01959-01-12 12 January 1959 01965-08-27 27 August 1965 &100000000000000060000006 years, &10000000000000227000000227 days
Petrovsky, BorisBoris Petrovsky 01965-09-08 8 September 1965 01980-12-12 12 December 1980 &1000000000000001500000015 years, &1000000000000009500000095 days
Burenkov, SergeiSergei Burenkov 01980-12-12 12 December 1980 01986-12-26 26 December 1986 &100000000000000060000006 years, &1000000000000001400000014 days
Chazov, YevgeniyYevgeniy Chazov 01987-02-17 17 February 1987 01990-03-29 29 March 1990 &100000000000000030000003 years, &1000000000000004000000040 days
Denisov, IgorIgor Denisov 01990-04-18 18 April 1990 01991-11-26 26 November 1991 &100000000000000010000001 year, &10000000000000222000000222 days

See also

Portal icon Soviet Union portal
Portal icon Health and fitness portal


  1. ^ a b Sorokina, Tatyana. "История медицины [History of Medicine]" (in Russian). Retrieved 14 October 2010. 
  2. ^ a b Government of the USSR. "О МЕРАХ ПО ДАЛЬНЕЙШЕМУ УЛУЧШЕНИЮ ЗДРАВООХРАНЕНИЯ И РАЗВИТИЮ МЕДИЦИНСКОЙ НАУКИ В СТРАНЕ [On measures to further enhance the health and development of medical science in the country]" (in Russian). Great Soviet Encyclopaedia. Retrieved 25 October 2010. 
  3. ^ a b Government of the USSR. "К разработке основ законодательства о здравоохранении [To develop a legal framework on public health]" (in Russian). Business Law Institute of The State University of Management. Retrieved 25 October 2010. 
  4. ^ Feldbrugge, Ferdinand J. (1993). Russian Law: The End of the Soviet System and the Role of Law. Martinus Nijhoff Publishers. p. 160. ISBN 0792323599. 
  5. ^ Filtzer, Donald A. (2002). Soviet workers and late Stalinism: labour and the restoration of the Stalinist system after World War II. Cambridge University Press. p. 109. ISBN 0521815037. 
  6. ^ "Здравоохранение: Значение слова "Здравоохранение" [Health: Meaning of the word "health"]" (in Russian). Great Soviet Encyclopaedia. Retrieved 25 October 2010. 

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ministry of Finance (Soviet Union) — Ministry of Finance of the USSR Министерство финансов СССР All ministry seals of the Soviet Union used the Soviet coat of arms …   Wikipedia

  • Ministry of Communications (Soviet Union) — Ministry of Communications of the USSR Министерство связи СССР Official emblem of the Ministry of Communications of the USSR on a Soviet Union stamp (1972). The Ministry of Communications was responsible for issuing postage stamp …   Wikipedia

  • Ministry of Culture (Soviet Union) — Ministry of Culture of the USSR Министерство культуры СССР All ministry seals of the Soviet Union used the Soviet coat of arms …   Wikipedia

  • Ministry of Education (Soviet Union) — Ministry of Education, founded as the People s Commissariat for Education but commonly called Narkompros (Russian: Народный комиссариат просвещения, Наркомпрос), was the Soviet agency charged with the administration of public education and most… …   Wikipedia

  • Ministry of Justice (Soviet Union) — Ministry of Justice of the USSR Министерство юстиции СССР …   Wikipedia

  • Ministry of Railways (Soviet Union) — The Ministry of Railways oversaw the railways of the Soviet Union. It was subdivided into 32 different railway agencies, which between them had millions of employees. The ministry was responsible for several centralized departments, such as… …   Wikipedia

  • Ministry of Health — may refer to: Ministry of Health (Algeria) Ministry of Health (Armenia) Ministry of Health (Brazil) (Ministério da Saúde) Ministry of Health (Burma) Ministry of Health (Chile) (Ministerio de Salud de Chile) and Fondo Nacional de Salud (FONASA)… …   Wikipedia

  • Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Soviet Union) — Ministry of External Relations of the USSR Министерство внешних сношений СССР …   Wikipedia

  • Ministry of Agriculture and Food (Soviet Union) — The Soviet Ministry of Agriculture and Food was established in 1923 and known prior to 1946 as the People s Commissariat for Agriculture Narkomzem). It took over the Narkomzem offices located at Orlikov Pereulok, 1, Moscow, designed by Aleksey… …   Wikipedia

  • Ministry for State Security (Soviet Union) — The Ministry of State Security (MGB) (Russian: Министерство государственной безопасности, Ministerstvo Gosudarstvennoi Bezopasnosti) was the name of Soviet secret police from 1946 to 1953. Contents 1 Origins of the MGB 2 Functions of the MGB 3… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.