Instituto Nacional de Saúde Dr. Ricardo Jorge
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 Earlier days


The National Institute of Health Dr. Ricardo Jorge (INSA) is a century old institution created in 1899 by Ricardo Jorge, a public health medical doctor. The original name was Central Institute of Hygiene.

The decision of creating the Institute arose from the necessity to fight an outbreak of bubonic plague in the city of Porto. The proposal for the creation of the Institute, elaborated by Dr. Ricardo Jorge, was, however, previous to this event.

In 1929, by national recognition of the relevancy of INSA founder’s work, the name of Dr. Ricardo Jorge was added to the Central Institute of Hygiene. In 1945, INSA was renamed to Superior Institute of Hygiene, after the reorganization of social work services.

In 1971, after an important global reform of the Services of Health, INSA received its present designation together with the assignment of multiple competences and new functions. A modern building was constructed in a new area of Lisbon, officially inaugurated in 1973, increasing the number of laboratories in areas of Public Health priorities.

Former directors of the INSA:

  • 1902-1926: Ricardo Jorge;
  • 1926-1945: The Institute (by then Central Institute of Hygiene) was under the General Directorate of Health of the Internal Affairs Ministry and exclusively dedicated to teaching;
  • 1946-1961: Fernando da Silva Correia;
  • 1963-1966: Bernardino Álvaro Vicente de Pinho;
  • 1967-1968, 1972-1974 and 1976-1982: Francisco António Gonçalves Ferreira;
  • 1968-1972: Arnaldo Sampaio;
  • 1974-1976: Installation committee constituted by Aloísio Coelho, Carlos Silveira, Jorge de Sousa Costa, José Morais, Maria dos Anjos Catry and Maria Vitória Vaz Pato;
  • 1982-1993: Aloísio Coelho;
  • 1993-1997: José Bandeira Costa;
  • 1997-1999: José Luís Castanheira;
  • 1999-2000: José Carlos Marinho Falcão;
  • 2000-2004: João Manuel Lavinha;
  • 2004-2006: Fernando de Almeida;
  • 2006-2014: José Pereira Miguel;
  • Since 2014: Fernando de Almeida.