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Professor dr Uroš Jekić

Profesor dr Uroš Jekić (1896-1980),was born in village Paklenja close to Raska, on December 1896. He completed the elementary school in his native place and six classes of secondary school in Belgrade. The winds of war flew away the student Jekic over the wasteland of Albania to France, where he, together with a group of students from Serbia, finished the seventh and eighth grade and graduated from the secondary school. He started his medical studies in Bordeaux immediately after G.C.E. He graduated from the Faculty in 1923.


Yet during his medical studies, young Jekic had the affinity towards problems of human psychic, and, accordingly, his doctoral thesis, which he defended in Bordeaux in 1923, was related to respective field: “Le cacodylate de soude à hautes doses. Résultats thérapeutiques dans les états dépressifs mélancoliques”. As Prof. Dr. Peter, a distinguished psychiatrist from Bordeaux, noticed such affinity of his, he advised him to dedicate himself to neuropsychiatry.

In 1924, upon his return to country, he started his specialist training in neuropsychiatry in General State Hospital in Belgrade. Upon completed residency, he worked in the Mental Hospital in Topionica, near by Nis, until 1945. He was a secondary doctor, primarius (senior consultant), head of department and finally, director. During two decades, as long as he used to work in this hospital, he could see the loneliness of these miserable people. He believed that it was of great importance for these patients and their psyche to be surrounded by nature, because monotonous patient’s outfit, grayness of rooms they stayed in, and humdrum existence weakened their interest for the outer world and living in general. Bearing all this in mind, Dr. Jekic believed that these miserable people would be refreshed surrounded by nature like “moisture wakes up plants fallen by dryness”. He wanted to bring patients into state of appropriate human relations. Therefore, he had a big farm built in Topionica where working therapy was applied with the intent to make life easier for several hundred patients. Not only did he understand these patients, he deeply cared for them. He dedicated his whole life to those who suffered. During occupation of our country, he was arrested several times by German occupier and police in Nis. His two brothers were slain by occupier and the only son was killed in partisan action in 1944. In September 1944, Dr. Jekic joined the partisan ranks.
He was a Minister of Health of the first government in Serbia in 1945. After being detached from his patients for three years, he returned to neuropsychiatry. Namely, in 1949, he started working at the Clinic of Neuropsychiatry of the School of Medicine, in Belgrade. In the same year, he was elected extraordinary (part-time) professor at the Department of Neurology and Psychiatry, and a full professor in 1958. In 1953, after professor Vladimir Vujic died, he was appointed a Director of Clinic of Neuropsychiatry, discharging his duty until his retirement in 1968. In the same year (1953), he was elected a Head of Department of Neurology and Psychiatry.
Under the management of Professor Dr. Uros Jekic, regular workshops for training of residents were introduced. A large number of doctors started been engaged in subspecialties, both in neurology and psychiatry, thus deepening and evolving specific fields. Moreover, there was an abrupt increase of residents and specialists trained and developed at the very Clinic, and the Clinic became the educational center and educator of personnel with the intention to expand neuropsychiatric service throughout SR of Serbia.
When our country was liberated, Professor Dr. Uros Jekic, known as public figure as well, was the first Minister of health in the Republic and one of the most active members of the Serbian Medical Society (SMS). For his merits for SMS development, he was elected an honorary president for life. Several years, he was a president of the SMS Section of Neuropsychiatry, founder and president of the Mental Hygiene Society as well as Forensic Board of the School of Medicine, a president of the Chief Board of Red Cross of Serbia for a long time. As of 1953, he was a chairman of the Psychiatric Commission of the Council for People’s Health of Serbia. He was an ideological initiator of struggle against alcoholism in our country. One of the essential merits of Professor Dr. Uros Jekic was his active contribution to general adoption of mental hygiene principles and consequent humanization of human relationships in inpatient facilities and medical institutions. Since 1948, he was a President of the Red Cross of Serbia. Professor Dr. Uros Jekic was a President of the Serbian Medical Society from 1949 to 1954.
Having realized that alcoholism is huge medical and social problem, Professor Jekic was, almost all his active life, dedicated to fight against this evil. Even the Red Cross of Serbia, with him as president, was engaged in this struggle. Within the Red Cross Organization, he founded the Anti-alcoholic Clinic providing the counseling and support. His activities in alcohol abuse control were highly appreciated by the World Health Organization in fight against alcoholism. He wrote a large number of professional and popular articles on alcoholism and delivered many lectures at the Kolarac University, in student’s organizations, schools and companies.
Together with his collaborators, he did a lot on improvement of forensic-psychiatric discipline and connection of judicial organs and psychiatric profession. He represented psychiatric profession at international congresses several times, especially when social psychiatry, psychopathology, criminal psychopathology and alcoholism were the topics.
His relation with students was quite amicable. He was extremely patient with students at exams. He never gave a failing grade. But he really wished that every student understood and mastered neuropsychiatry as good as possible.
Upon his retirement, he used to drink black coffee in his sitting room as early as 6 o’clock every morning. Various world journals were spread on table in front of him, but, unfortunately, he could not read them because of the impaired sight. His wife browsed them through and read some interesting articles to him. Among numerous journals, there was a journal of the School of Medicine in Bordeaux sent by its authorities on regular basis. It was the token of appreciation by this University where professor completed his medical studies for a long time now, in1923. In the park near-by, passers-by could see a man with grey hair in the advanced years, with thick-lens glasses, carrying himself upright while taking regular afternoon slow walks. His impaired vision allowed him only such pleasure. He was a man with high moral values, radiating with humanity, noble-mindedness and especially modesty.
He passed away in year of 1980 in Belgrade.

 

 

Webinars over Internet

Predvideli smo da se svakog trećeg četvrtka u mesecu, sa početkom u 12 časova, stručnoj i naučnoj neurološkoj javnosti Srbije obrate naši eminentni stručnjaci i predavači sa temama koje su aktuelne i koje zaokupljaju neurološku profesionalnu i istraživačku znatiželju kod nas i u svetu.
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Scientific papers

A list of scientific papers published by the employees of the Neurology clinic since 1981. Complete list can be found here.