BY MEDICAL 'CONGRESS.
AUCKLAND, February 12. When the New, Zealand committee's report on syphilis had been adopted by the Australasian Medical Congress, a memorandum was brought forward and discussed at length, after which it was decided to address the following statement and recommendations to the various Governments of Australasia:— Venereal diseases are proved to be responsible for a vast amount of damage to mankind. , The damage is expressed by loss of; life (frequently at its prime), insanity, sterility, destruction of family life, and inefficiency. The economic waste to the nation is enormous. The exact distribution of these diseases is unknown, but the momentary loss, estimated by an excellent authority, is that one twenty-fifth of .the population of Berlin, Paris, and New York are annually infected. It is fairly certain that 12 to Iff per cent, of the population of London, Paris, and Berlin are syphilitic, and in addition a much larger number are gonorrhoeic. There is good reason for thinking that Australasian cities are affected to much the same extent. Tliere are no other diseases which cause so much loss to the community. By the adoption of suitable. , measures, these diseases can be greatly I reduced in frequency, and may be J wholly suppressed. The steps which should be taken are:— ' (1) The provisioii of education (after consultation with 'educational experts) as to the consequences and methods of prevention of venereal diseases. (2) Provision of free scientific facili-
ties for effecting the early and accurate diagnosis ot venereal diseases, and foi' testing the results of treatment. (8) The provision of free treatment, both in and outdoor, at ' times convenient to the patients for all those who are unable to make their own arrangements. (4) The passage of legislation providuig for (a) the detention of any person suffering from venereal disease until by treatment he or she is rendered innocuous—the Prisoners' Detention Act of New South Wales already makes such provision; (b) the severe punishment of anyone who wilfully or negligently communicates venereal diseases to other people; (c) the severe punishment of anyone, not 'being a qualified medical practitioner, who undertakes to treat sufferers from venereal diseases. This provision is very necessary, be-1 cause*of the danger to innocent persons consequent on the unsuitable treatment of the infected The monetary cost of effecting the eradication of "venereal diseases would, not be very great; in fact, the expenditure would be very small by comparison, with the expenditure resulting from the present wholesale infection of the populace. There is no form of public expenditure which might so truly be described as national and reproductive. If the steps indicated are taken, with wisdom, the results will be a diminution of mortality, insanity, and the expenditure in hospitals, _ and asylums, and increased human efficiency, and better and healthier enjoyment of life. . The recommendations' quoted embody principles; their mode of application wouldvproperly" be a subject of discussion between the respective Governments and the branches of the British Medical Association.
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FURTHER RECOMMENDATIONS., Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIII, Issue 8794, 14 February 1914
FURTHER RECOMMENDATIONS. Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIII, Issue 8794, 14 February 1914
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