Isabel Zendal

Isabel Zendal is considered by The World Health Organisation (WHO) as the first nurse in history to take part in an international humanitarian mission.

The nurse Isabel Zendal was the only woman on the Royal Philanthropic Vaccine Expedition (1803-1812), led by Francisco Xavier de Balmis, whose role was essential in the vaccination against smallpox in the Americas, China and the Phillipines.

On the 30th of November 1803 the First International Healthcare Expedition in history, known as the Royal Philanthropic Vaccine Expedition, set sail from A Coruña.
22 orphaned children and doctor Francisco Javier Balmis, personal physician to Carlos IV, set off on a trip to the Americas, China and the Phillipines with the ambitious goal to immunise thousands of people against the dreaded disease.
Today we know that smallpox has been the deadliest viral disease in the history of mankind. This Spanish nurse was the only woman on board and she became the backbone of the expedition.
It is known that more than half a million people were innoculated. It was, without doubt, one of the greatest healthcare feats in history.

The pharmaceutical group Zendal is inspired by the figure of this Spanish nurse to, as Isabel Zendal did in her time, build a better future