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the effects of patent medicines upon the victims. He asserts that a large percentage of sudden deaths are due to the use of patent medicines contain. ing powerful drugs. The Seattle Star, among the newspapers, is especially active in showing the evils that attend the promiscuous use of patent medi. cines, which are so extensively advertised.
The physicians of Clatsop County, who are well organized, hereafter will decline to examine lodge candidates for the former price of $1, and will charge $2.50 or make no examinations. They very properly believe that the larger figure is none too much for making such an examination as is demanded. The lodges of Astoria are dissatisfied with the action of the local doctors, and they declare that there is a Portland man who is willing to run down to Clatsop County occasionally and examine candidates in a batch for a dollar a head.
The annual meeting of the State Board of Health of this state was held at Salem on the 11th of December. Dr. C. J. Smith, of Pendleton, was elected President; Dr. E. A. Pierce, of Salem, Vice-President, and Dr. R. C. Yenney, of Portland, was re-elected Secretary. Among the many important subjects discussed at the meeting were those of an open air sanitarium for consumptives, and the arranging of educational work among teachers of the public schools. Through the state superintendent it is intended to have instruction on the subject of communicable diseases given at teachers' insti. tutes in the future. By such a policy it is hoped to so instruct teachers that they may be able to properly handle epidemics when such arise.
The physicians of Pomeroy, Wash., are to be commended for their swift action on one W. A. Ingalls, who swooped down on their town in October last, and advertised himself as an “Eye specialist and refractionist" regardless of the laws as made and provided by the Legislature of Washington. The justice before whom Ingalls was brought promptly fined him, but the defendant took an appeal to the Superior Court. At the session of that court held on the 5th of December a jury was out just thirty minutes, and then came in with a verdict of guilty. He was duly fined $82.50 including costs. A few such convictions as this will do much to unite the doctors in fighting the charlatans who travel from town to town seeking victims.
The Open Air Sanatorium.-Miss Catherine McNamara, the new matron at the Sanatorium at Milwaukie, is an enthusiast in her work. She has had wide experience in similar work in Eastern states, and she insists that the place for Portland consumptives to get well is in or around Portland. She admits that her patients are a little depressed when it is foggy, “but when it is raining they are in their best and most cheerful mood.” Miss McNamara desires to see some bureau established where the patients after in making post mortem examinations in Seattle hereafter, Dr. S. F. Wiltsie announces that he will, as a public officer, pay special attention to convalescence can be assisted in getting employment that will be suitable for them. Also there should be established in Portland a free dispensary where information on the prevention and cure of tuberculosis will be dispensed without cost to those who are too poor to bear the expense of taking treatment in a sanatorium.
In the address of the retiring President, Dr. J. H. Lyons, of the King County Medical Society (Washington) he argues strongly against star chamber sessions of the Society. He said: "There are many subjects before our Society in which the general public has as deep an interest as have the physicians, and in justice to ourselves and the public those sessions should be open. By so doing our attitude toward the public and toward all questions in which they are directly interested will be better understood, confidence and belief in our altruistic claims will follow and our influence, not only as individuals, but as a profession will increase. If it be true, as has been pointed out to us, that the two great needs of our profession today are organized union and publicity of our altruistic work, then our plain duty is to take such steps as will secure the thorough organization of Washington physicians and permit such publicity of our work as will enable us to assume that position of honor and influence in the community which the character of our work justifies."
The Lane County Medical Association met last month at the office of Dr. J. W. Harris, and after the regular business was attended to Dr. Ira B. Bartle gave a talk on the effect of Malaria on the Kidneys. He claimed that there is no case of malaria, however slight, but leaves an effect on the kidneys or some of the other organs, and that malaria can be carried in the system for ten or more years without reinfection. The talk was made more interesting by the presentation of pathological specimens illustrative of the same. Professor Sweetser, of the State University, gave an interesting talk on the city water, with laboratory proofs for his conclusions. He claimed that the best means for obtaining a potable water was to have the protection between the source of supply and the consumer, or, in other words, a filtration system was the safest protection, The discussion of this paper was comprehensive and instructive, and the Society voted to use its influence in obtaining a filtration system. Prof. Sweetser was tendered the thanks of the Society, and given a most cordial invitation to attend any of its meetings.
Change of Name.-The valuable journal heretofore known
The Alkaloidal Clinic will hereafter come out under a changed name—the American Journal of Clinical Medicine. There will be no change of management, but additions to the editorial staff in the persons of Dr. Wm. J. Robinson, of New York City, who will conduct a department of dema. tology and Genito-urinary Diseases; Dr. Emory Lanphear, of St. Louis, who will conduct a department of "Surgery, Obstetrics and Gynecology," and other departments will be added as arrangements can be made for them. The new journal will be strongly opposed to all advertising of proprietary medicines “to the laity against the medical profession, to the detriment of the people.”
The Business Aspect of Medicine.The practitioner who has bills to meet every day realizes that there is a business side to his profession, whose demands are inexorable. It is not the American fashion to politely bow and say to the patient—"pay what you will," as is the case with the Italian practitioner. There may be method in that style, when dealing with supposedly rich Americans, but it is not the manner that prevails in this country. Here certain fees are understood to be standard for certain work, with variations upward, according to the ability of the physician or surgeon to command. Very much that the doctors do is for the general well being of the community. Prevention of disease is the doctrine they preach at all times. To the stern business man this might seem to be working against one's own interest, and in a sense it is. But it is the only course that is open to a self-respecting profession,
whose principles demand that some other object in life shall engage the attention of the doctor, besides the one of making money.
Some very practical persons have been insisting loudly that the strong movement now being made for organ. ization of medical societies is not in the interests of the members of the organization, but altogether in the interests of the public. In fact these very practical persons say boldly that “altruism has been the shibboleth of medicine long enough. It would be a good doctrine if everybody practiced it, but while nearly every man is looking out for himself, the altruistic doctor will be left. If medical organizations in this country have done much to elevate the rank and file of the profession from a material standpoint, I have failed to see it."
This particular practical person herein quoted is the editor of the Med. ical Era, published at St. Louis, and it would seem that the brand of organization that prevails in Missouri must differ from the far West. ern article. Ask the members of the profession in Clatsop County, Oregon, the best organized county on the Pacific Coast, and they will tell of the material advancement that has been made. Aside from the advantages de rived from frequent meetings, read. ing of papers, clinics and comparison of notes, all of which tend to greater efficiency, there has come with organization by our neighbor county the raising of rates for life insurance examinations from a starvation to a reasonable figure.
When the physicians of a state ask a legislative body for a law regulat. ing quackery, or relating to the ad. mission of new doctors to practice,
they frequently get what they ask for, because it is very apparent that their motives are not altogether selfish. The legislators are generally alive to the fact that the public will be the most benefited by the passage of such laws as are asked for. Some. times individual legislators are prejudiced against restrictive measures, be cause they or their cousins or aunts are Christian Scientists, osteopaths, followers of some other cult or ism. But when such influences as thes are not too strong, a united profession can accomplish much, when a lack of union will secure nothing. The ideal condition can be secured only by first having good laws passed. Then the executive and legal departments must see to their enforcement. If the proper course is followed by the medical societies, and by the individual members, there need be no fear that the profession will fail to reap material reward as a result of organization.
the physician to the public. When the physicians' organizations ask the legislators for laws protecting the public against the raids of the quacks, knowledge obtained by the general public in schools or by lectures or addresses, as suggested, will then do much to promote the co-operation of intelligent people. The efforts to teach anatomy, physiology and hygiene in the public schools, certainly form a step in the right direction; and the effort to reach through the newspapers, those whose education school boys and girls has ceased, is also a step in the right direction.
It is somewhat remarkable to see the ultra conservatism in this regard, on the part of some of our English friends. In a recent issue of the Lan. cet there appear letters from medical men deploring the fact that some lay newspapers had taken upon
themselves to review certain medical works, and through the medium of such reviews to spread abroad facts such as were found within the books. There is no hint that these particular books or the reviews contained facts that would be damaging for the pub. lic to know; it was simply a protest on the part of some of the more conservative practitioners of England against the modern idea that it is a good thing for the public to have some enlightenment as to matters that are considered to be within the exclusive domain of medical men.
It is probable that before Oregon and other western states can be thor. oughly awakened to the duties of its legislators and its prosecuting officers, public meetings will need to be held, at which these matters will be dis. cussed. Such meetings have been strongly urged by those who have had experience in promoting organization. There is a great field to be worked, and it is not easy to state what is the best way to go about it.
Getting at the Public Conscience.The idea is very general in this country that it is the proper thing for the medical profession, individually and collectively, to do all it can to educate the public in matters pertaining to health. The more the people know, the less likely they will be to deluge their stomachs with the patent medicines that are
advertised so freely in the lay press. A recent writer in one of our leading medical journals suggests that special articles be written for the larger newspapers, with a view of disseminating medical truths to the public. In this issue of the Medical Sentinel, the address of Dr. B. A. Cathey, of Corvallis, to the society of which he was the retiring president, suggests the same thing, in effect. This is undoubtedly the true view to take of the duty of
The Officers of The State Medical Societies of Oregon, Washington
Idaho, Montana and Utah
G. S. Armstrong, M. D., Spokane
F. M. Shaw, M.D., Ashland
Ed. E. Maxey, M. D., Boise
W. Carlton Smith, M.D., Salem
Address all communications regarding papers, subscriptions, advertising or business mat. ters to the MEDICAL SENTINEL, Marquam Building, Portland, Oregon
QUACKERY IN IDAHO
While the state of Idaho is not Russia, it would seem from recent developments, that freedom of speech is about as scarce an article in our neighboring state as in the dominion of the Czar. Our readers will recall an address published in the November issue of the Medical Sentinel by Dr. Nourse, of Hailey, which he delivered before the Idaho Medical State Society last October. He called attention to the condition of the laws of his state governing medical affairs, and very properly outlined the work that had been done, and the cases then pending in the courts, looking to the suppression of quackery. He called attention to the folly of the section of the law which provides that the work of the medical board is reviewed by a judge who knows nothing of the subject. In his address appears the following paragraph:
"Think of it! A judge, however learned he may be in matters of law, sitting as superior to a board of six medical men, on matters pertaining to medicine, gravely scrutinizing the markings given by a medical board to a candidate for a license to practice medicine, to see if he has been rated correctly. It would be intensely funny if it were not, in fact, so serious a matter."
Dr. Nourse suggested a reversal of the picture—that a doctor should be clothed with power to determine whether or not a certain candidate before the bar for license to practice law had been rated correctly by a board of six lawyers.
Then Dr. Nourse relates something as to the trial of the case before the court, to which the plaintiff had appealed from the adverse decision of the medical board. He tells that the judge took the exam