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

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Barking 1961

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Barking]

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Five midwives continued to practice in the district, including three undent
auspices of the Queen's Nurses.
District Midwives undertook the confinement of 290 patients which represen
30% of the births occurring in the Borough.
Barking Hospital continued as Part II Training School for midwifery and pup
midwives are well received on the district.
Your Medical Officer of Health is approved by the Central Midwives' Board
give the requisite public health lectures, and a series of these have been condu
ted at the Barking Hospital.
Supervision of Midwives
Miss E. O'Connor, Superintendent of the Lady Rayleigh Training Home has
undertaken the non-medical supervision of midwives since 27th October, 1961.

The following statistics relate to the work of health visitors:-

Home visits to expectant mothers1,3451,2661,2661,0581,147
Home visits to children under 5 yrs.10,1849,2518,5338,7508,981
Home visits to aged and handicapped persons, etc.4,4185,7126,6926,0796,434
No access visits2,4872,2702,2232,5061,950
Households visited4,3404,7634,3114,2424,459
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At the end of 1961 there were nine whole-time Health Visitors and one part
time Health Visitor, one full-time Tuberculosis Visitor and one part-time Tuberculosis
Visitor. The establishment provides for a staff of twenty-two but this
shortage of Health Visitors has persisted for many years. However, a number of
part-time clinic nurses are held against the establishment for health visitors who
are thus released for more home visiting.
Since the inception of the National Health and Welfare Services in 1948, the
pattern of the work carried out by Health Visitors has changed. Today they are
concerned with the health of the family as a whole and the may include grandParents,
aunts and uncles, or even brothers and sisters, in addition to the
The duties of Health Visitors include advice on the care and after-care of
persons suffering from physical or mental ill-health, injuries and disabilities, the
care and management of children of all ages, health education which aims at the
maintenance of good health and the prevention of the spread of infection. It is
also necessary for Health Visitors to assess and advise on the need for other
social services and how they can be obtained by a family and persons in trouble
Evening home visits are increasing because it is realised that fathers have
been neglected in the past and are most appreciative if they are also included is
the instruction and advice given, particularly in regard to the care of their children.
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