Hektoen’s founders made seminal contributions to the disciplines of liver disease, gastroenterology, urology, cardiology, and renal diseases, resulting in the publication of more than 2,700 scientific papers. They also advanced medical education by means of lectures, symposia, and fellowships.  Some of the key programs were:

  • Medicine and the Arts
  • The Morris T. Friedell Mentorship Program
  • The Society of Medical History
  • Medical Ethics Project 

CLICK HERE to learn more about Hektoen’s education programming roots.


Even though Hektoen has evolved over the years, it still maintains a commitment to furthering medical/health education as a resource, collaborator and sponsor.  Below are examples of Hektoen’s current approach to education.

Hektoen International Journal

The journal started in November 2008 with the purpose of bringing culture into medicine and exposing healthcare professionals to art, ethics, literature, history, anthropology, literature, philosophy, religion, and sociology. This free, online-only publication  averages more than 1 million annual page views and currently has more than 3,000 articles that are brought to life by 4,000+ images.  It also sponsors an annual “Grand Prix” essay contest.

Nurses & the Humanities

Hektoen’s Nurses & the Humanities initiative was founded in June 2006 to present programs that demonstrate and encourage the healing power of the arts and the humanities for caregivers and their patients.  There is also an adjunct called the Hektoen Institute Nurses and Humanities Advisory Committee which provides humanistic, creative and interactive educational opportunities to clinicians.

Foxglove Alliance

Operationally coordinated and financially supported by Hektoen, the Foxglove Alliance (FGA) was formed in 2015 and in addition to engaging in education initiatives, it is dedicated to:

  • Engaging in community health programs
  • Marketing, Communications/Promotion & Advocacy
  • Formation of joint initiatives and strategic collaborations
  • Issue identification, discussions and analysis
  • Calls to action on critical and/or noteworthy public health care issues.

The other current FGA members are: 

    • Access to Care
    • The Chicagoland Healthcare Workforce Collaborative
    • Health Care Council of Chicago
    • The I Am Abel Foundation
    • The Illinois Association of Free & Charitable Clinics
    • The Illinois Medical District
    • The Institute of Medicine of Chicago
    • The Lead Abatement Resource Center
    • The Michael Reese Research & Education Foundation
    • The Portes Foundation
    • The Public Health Institute of Metropolitan Chicago
    • T.H.E.N.
    • West Side United

An education example is how Hektoen and the I Am Abel Foundation have formed a strategic partnership that focuses on I Am Abel’s core work of exposing Chicago minority youth to and helping them enter into careers in healthcare.  This includes identifying additional resources for I Am Abel and even supporting the revival of the foundation’s “Medicine Makers” television program.

The Next Phase

The next phase of Hektoen’s education programming will include being a provider, facilitator and sponsor of mentorships, internships and learning experiences.  For example, in the spring of 2021, Hektoen formed a partnership with the American School of London (ASL). Ms. Juliana Menegakis, a junior at the ASL, was selected as the first Hektoen International – ASL  journal intern. Her project encompassed three phases:

  1. Learning about the contents, mission, and operation of  the Hektoen International journal;
  2. Editing an online journal; and
  3. Research and writing.

Ms. Menegakis selected a special topic in consultation with the Editor in Chief and Associate Editor of the journal and composed an essay on Juana of Castille.  In addition to projects like this and the I Am Abel Foundation, Hektoen also provides support to organizations such as Chicago’s Youth Guidance and Luminarts.