ancient Hospital "Giuseppe Testa"

The ancient Hospital "Giuseppe Testa" is located in Taranto (Contrada Rondinella, 5220).
In 1932, the Regime’s National bank for Social Insurance built a sanatorium hospital, in Rondinella district – one of the healthiest areas of the city – on the Road leading to Reggio Calabria, opposite to the wide bay of Mar Grande.
The area on which the hospital stands is about 60,000 square meters, was purchased by the Provincial Consortium and then donated to the Cassa di Assicurazioni, who built the edifice - on a 3,500-square meter area - consisting of three storeys and a raising, with spacious glass verandas, and transformed the remaining portion of the site in a park.
The hospital is named after Giuseppe Testa, a nineteenth century physician, born in Martina Franca, in the province of Taranto, who became famous in Naples for having saved the leg of a nobleman of the Kingdom, from certain amputation, diagnosed by the luminaries of the time.
The complex could accommodate more than 200 sick people and treated bone and urogenital tuberculosis for the whole of southern Italy. It hospitalized children who were provided with the primary education all through the long duration of the disease. There was also an annexed farm to provide patients with healthy food and a two-hectare green park.
The hospital was also used for research which is why it was called "institute".
During the last world war, the "Testa" complex became a military allied hospital. The British built a shed designed to be a Church for the Anglican worship. They used to bury the dead fellow-countrymen in the park and later dug them up and took them home.
With health-care reform, being finally conquered tuberculosis in Italy, after being classified as specialized regional hospital, on June 1st, 1986 the hospital activity was closed mainly because of air pollution in the area even if the "Testa" was featured with a working biological air treatment plant.
Today the hospital is the Taranto seat of regional agency for environment (ARPA) and Veterinary office.

External view and garden of the ancient Hospital "Giuseppe Testa"

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Inside of the ancient Hospital "Giuseppe Testa"

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Anglican Church in the garden of the ancient Hospital "Giuseppe Testa"

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Aerial view of the ancient Hospital "Giuseppe Testa" in the second half of the Twentieth Century

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  • Photos and main text by Giuseppe Marzocca moc.liamg|79accozram.eppesuig#| and Federica Piccinni moc.liamg|69.inniccipaciredef#|, courtesy of Enrico Viola and Gruppo Umanesimo della Pietra

Bibliography

  • M. Fumarola, La Chiesa del Carmine di Martina Franca, 1981, Fasano di Brindisi, pp. 74-94
  • Marinò Angelo, Repertorio bio-bibliografico degli scrittori, artisti e scienziati martinesi, 1970, Martina Franca, pp. 84-88
  • Rapolla Testa Armando, Cenni sulla vita ed opere di Giuseppe testa, 1819-1894, 1967, Martina Franca, pp. 3-5
  • Viola Enrico, Quotidiano di Puglia, Taranto, 1/09/2008


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