Landmark n°5. Antiguo Instituto de Higiene (Old Hygiene Institute)
This organism was founded in 1892 and it was known as “Desinfectorio Público” (Public Disinfection Building). It was primarily created because of the infectious focuses generated by very overcrowded housing tenements that could be found all over Santiago at the end of the XIX century, mainly occupied by masses of migrants that were accustomed to living in these conditions. That is why, by this time, Chile held the world record of infant mortality. Each year smallpox, cholera and tuberculosis took thousands of lives. This building was used to study the public hygiene conditions in Santiago and was also used to house all the technical equipment and personnel in charge of the disinfection of these homes.
This institute was a pioneer of public health education regarding vaccination and disease prevention and was closed in 1924. Today it is a historical monument that houses the offices of the Policía de Investigaciones (Investigation Police).
This place was used as a detention center during the time of the dictatorship.
Address: Av. Independencia 56
Services: Access to the building is restricted.
Photography only of the outside building is allowed.