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Eloísa Díaz

Eloísa Díaz

March 3 ,2023

Eloísa Díaz Inzunza (25 June 1866 – 1 November 1950), was a Chilean doctor. She was the first female medical student to attend the University of Chile, and the first woman to become a doctor of medicine in Chile as well as the entire region of South America.

Eloísa Díaz Insunza was born in Santiago, Chile. Her parents were Eulogio Díaz Varas and Carmela Insunza. She completed her requisite studies at Dolores Cabrera Martínez’s school, Isabel Le Brun de Pinochet’s school and at Instituto Nacional.

Díaz enrolled in 1880 in Escuela de Medicina de la Universidad de Chile (English: University of Chile, School of Medicine) shortly after a law was enacted which allowed women to study at the university. Díaz became the first woman in South America to graduate and earn her medical license She graduated on 27 December 1886, and obtained her degree on 3 January 1887. Her thesis was named Breves observaciones sobre la aparición de la pubertad en la mujer chilena y las predisposiciones patológicas del sexo (English: Brief observations on the apparition of puberty in Chilean women and their pathological predispositions about sex).

Díaz began working at San Borja Hospital in January 1891. She worked as a teacher and physician in Escuela Normal from 1889 until 1897. Díaz became the School Medic Supervisor of Santiago in 1898, and was promoted to School Medic Supervisor of Chile. Díaz held this position for more than 30 years. As a philanthropist, Díaz founded several kindergartens, polyclinics for the poor, and school camps.

Díaz retired in 1925. In 1950, she was taken ill and admitted to the San Vicente de Paúl Hospital, where she died at the age of 84.


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