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

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Dagenham 1957

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Dagenham]

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Date of birthDefect and degree of disabilityHome conditionsNo. in family and whether neglected or not—degree of parental understandingResponse to nursery proposal
7 11. 5. 53.Mental and physical retardation - severe. Unable to stand at 4 years.Good-Council house. Good housewifery.Mother reports that elder children now lacking attention because of this boy and the other children are beginning to worry about his backwardness.Requires intensive pyhsiotherapy and in this case it is the family who need relief in helping to care for the handicapped boy.
8 17. 10. 53.Epilepsy - fairly well stabilized on treatment.Very poor indeed. Mother unable to manage the home or the children. Dirty and unkempt.This child is neglected because of an older epileptic with severe behaviour disorder. Mother is not mentally capable of coping with the two children.Admits she needs help in caring for these two children and welcomes any.
9. 4. 11. 52.Spastic. Severe defect and some mental retardation.Good.No neglect of younger girl. Full under standing by parents - every help given.Mother sought advice re nursery because the child can no longer play with children of her own or sister's age. Requires physiotherapy and speech therapy.
10. 20. 5. 52.Hydrocephalic and Spina Bifida. Severe degree of defect.Good.No neglect but mother is finding it very difficult to manage this boy as he grows bigger. Almost entirely a question of nursing.Requires intensive physio-therapy and will require all forms of training.
11. 18.1.54.Epileptic.Gross overcrowding. Mothering good in very difficult conditions.2 other children under five years. Mother unable to care for them all adequately.Urgently needs relief in caring for the children and this boy would benefit from nursery admission.
12. 14. 5. 55.Spastic - severe. Mentally retarded. Severe degree of disability.Was living in grandmother's home. Mother severe thryo-toxicosis. Unable to manage. Now moved to ground floor flat - doing very well.No other children. Mother is now beginning to understand the degree of disability but unable to give much help.Would benefit from intensive physiotherapy. Mother overanxious to do everything to help him.
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