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

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Port of London 1912

Report for the year ended 31st December 1912 of the Medical Officer of Health for the Port of London

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I herewith give a record of the cases of this disease met with. Ten vessels have reported 38 cases during the voyage:—

Date of Arrival.Name of Vessel.Where from.N umber of Cases.
January 11"Marga,"of DrammenChili8
„ 15s.s. "Namur,"of Greenock, 123,528Yokohama6
„ 28s.8. "Trocas,"of London, 101,972Singapore3
„ 28s.s. "Ping Suey,"of Liverpool, 110,143Yokohama1
February 6"Ganges,'' of TvedestrandCallao6
„ 7s.s. "Den of Kelly,"of Dundee, 118,750Calcutta1
„ 11s.s. "Sicilia,"of Glasgow, 113,933Antwerp8
June 14s.s. "Namur,"of Greenock, 123,528Yokohama1
„ 29s.s. "Sardinia,"of Glasgow, 115,696Colombo3
October 19s.s. "Nubia,"of Greenock, 102,394Yokohama1

The Public Health (Tuberculosis) Regulations, 1908. The Public Health (Tuberculosis
in Hospitals) Regulations and the Public Health (Tuberculosis) Regulations,
1912, have been revoked, but will continue in force until January 31st, 1913.
During the year 1 notification has been received from a Medical Practitioner and 70
cases have been reported on incoming ships. In each case the quarters occupied by the
patient have been disinfected, and where the person has not left the vessel, he has been
isolated wherever practicable.
I described in my last Annual Report, the prevalence of Pulmonary Tuberculosis
amongst seamen, and gave some statistics showing its extent.
I must again repeat that the conditions under which seamen live on board vessels
are extremely favourable to the spread of infection and the development of this disease.
The occupants of the seamen's quarters on board many ships may be described as
"troglodytes "for indeed many of these places are verily similar to caves, constructed
of air tight materials, dark, overcrowded in a hygienic sense, and ventilated (?) by an
iron pipe which is generally blocked up, thus only allowing the fresh air to enter by the
door. The following example, which was met with during the year, will indicate the
possible danger which may arise from persons on board suffering from Pulmonary