Italian physician Carlo Urbani died on this day in 2003. He was the first to identify SARS as a new and dangerous infectious disease. SARS is an abbreviation for Severe acute respiratory syndrome. Carlo Urbani contracted SARS through contact with his patients, and died from the effects of the disease precisely on this day. He was 46 at the moment of his death.
Urbani was born in Italy, in the town of Castelplanio near Ancona. He studied medicine and devoted himself to treating infectious diseases. For a while, he was also the president of the Italian branch of Doctors Without Borders.
Dr. Urbani saw his first case of SARS in the Vietnamese city of Hanoi. He issued a warning to the World Health Organization (WHO). It is possible that the activities of Dr. Carlo Urbani saved millions of lives because the WHO conducted large actions with the goal of preventing an epidemic.