Physicians Relief Fund Records, 1974-2005

Physicians Relief Fund Records

Historical Note

The Physicians Relief Fund, Inc. was incorporated in 1974 in the State of New York to provide financial relief or loans to physicians and their dependents in times of need. This perpetuation of the tradition of professional solidarity emerged from the Fund’s history as a committee (Physicians Loan and Relief Fund), as of 1929, of the Medical Society of the County of New York, in association with – among others - the Eastern Medical Society (dissolved 1948).

Within the Physicians Relief Fund, corporate officers and Board members (composed mostly of M.D.s) served on a volunteer basis, engaging legal and professional assistance as needed. At monthly meetings recommendations and applications for assistance were reviewed, as were the awards from the David and Dorothy Merksamer Scholarship Fund, a program of assistance to students and scholars demonstrating need, on behalf of the Medical Society of the County of New York as of 1997-1998.

Improved access to greater social security resources and scholarship award practices were among the factors that led to the dissolution of the corporation in 2005, involving the generous disbursement of corporate assets in favor of the Physicians Home and Columbia University.

Collection Description

Consists of document groups, acts and correspondence, reflecting the four-decade span of the association's corporate life and philanthropic activities. While most of the collection consists of copies of final administrative records, the collection includes minutes of executive meetings, assessment of applications for relief, reports, correspondence, financial records, and copies of documents that relate to the historical background to the PRF’s incorporation (records located primarily in Series II, Folders 1 and 4.). These papers contain personal records and reference to individual applicants’ private circumstances. No original pre-1974 documents are present.

Some materials were housed in standard 3-ring binders, which have been discarded.

Administrative Info

Collection processed and described by Donald Prochera.

Requests for permission to quote from or publish any materials should be directed to the reference librarian or curator in writing. The names of aid recipients may not be published.

Preferred Citation

Physicians Relief Fund. The Drs. Barry and Bobbi Coller Rare Book Reading Room, New York Academy of Medicine Library.


Donated by the trustees of the Physicians Relief Fund, Inc. in 2006, presented by David L. Goldblatt, LLD.

Collection Contents

Series I: Minutes and By Laws - 1974-2004

Box 1    Folder 1    Certificate of incorporation - 1974
Box 1    Folder 2    By Laws, certification of officers, financial documents - 1974-1975
Box 1    Folder 3    Minutes and By Laws - 1974-1975

Also includes correspondence

Box 1    Folder 4    Minutes - 1982-1991
Box 1    Folder 5    Minutes of Board of Directors meetings - 1992-2004

Subseries A: Revision of By Laws - 1991-1994

Box 1    Folder 1    Correspondence and certification - 1991-1994
Box 1    Folder 2    Correspondence and certification - 1991-1994

Series II: Annual Reports and Scholarships - 1988-2004

Box 1    Folder 1    Annual Reports - 1992-2002
Box 1    Folder 2    Recipient lists - 1975-2000
Box 1    Folder 3    Scholarship awards lists - 1988-2004
Box 1    Folder 4    Review of activities (1929-1947) and miscellaneous - 1947, 1987

Series III: Dissolution - 2000-2005

Box 2    Folder 1    Certificate of dissolution and related - 2002-2004
Box 2    Folder 2    Correspondence - 2000-2005
Box 2    Folder 3    Approval and order of dissolution, Supreme Court of NY - 2004
Box 2    Folder 4    Annual filing for charitable organizations - 2005

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Index Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the catalog of The New York Academy of Medicine Library. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

Physicians Relief FundSearch ArchiveGrid
Medicine -- New York (State) -- New York -- Societies, etc.Search ArchiveGrid
Charities -- New York (State) -- New YorkSearch ArchiveGrid