London's Pulse: Medical Officer of Health reports 1848-1972

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Chelsea 1913

Annual report for 1913 of the Medical Officer of Health

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The above Table shows the infantile mortality rates and the birth-rates
in the five wards of the Borough. The births occurring in the Chelsea
Workhouse and other maternity institutions have been distributed
amongst the various wards.
From Table XVII. (Local Government Board, Table iv.) it will be
seen that out of a total of 112 deaths of infants under one year of age in
1913, 46 or 41.1 per cent, occurred in the first four weeks of life, as compared
with 37.6 per cent, in 1912, and 27.3 per cent, in 1911. Thirty
deaths occurred in the first week of life, equal to 26.8 per cent, of the
total, the corresponding figure for 1912 being 21.2 per cent., and for 1911,
14.4 per cent.
The majority of these deaths in the first month of life are due to
prematurity, congenital defects, injury at birth, wasting, and congenital
syphilis. For deaths under one month the rate of mortality in 1913 was
38 per 1,000 births, as against 26 in 1912, the average rate for the 8 years
1905-1912 being 37.
Between the ages of 1 month and 12 months, 66 deaths, or 58.9 per
cent, of the total, occurred in 1913, as compared with 62.4 per cent, in
1912, 22 of these deaths being due to diarrhoea, as compared with only 7
in 1912.
The principal causes of death amongst infants under one year in 1913
were :—Diarrhoea, 22 ; pneumonia, 17 ; prematurity, 15 ; wasting, 13 ;
congenital malformations, 7; and congenital syphilis, 4.
Illegitimatc Births.—The following Table shows, for each of the
years 1905-1913, the number of illegitimate births belonging to the
Borough, the number known to be alive at the end of each year, the
number known to be dead, and the number unaccounted for.

Table XIII.—Borough of Chelsea.

Year.Illegitimate Births.
Number.Per cent. of total births.Alive at end of year.Dead at end of year..Unaccount-ed for.Deaths under 1 to 1,000 births.
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The infantile mortality rates in the above Table are evidently
minimum rates from 1905 to 1908, owing to the considerable numbers
each year unaccounted for by change of residence, or other cause. During
the past four years it has been possible to trace the subsequent histories
of the illegitimate infants with some approach to accuracy.

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