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

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West Ham 1948

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for West Ham]

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During the period 5th July to 31st December 1948, the Officers were called upon on 136 occasions with the following results:-

MFTotal
Admitted to mental hospital as voluntary patients281846
Admitted to mental hospital on Urgency Orders112233
Admitted to mental hospital on Temporary Orders-22
Admitted to mental hospital as Certified Cases112
No statutory action taken203353
6076136
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In many of the cases where no statutory action was taken, and In other cases coming to
their knowledge,, the officers were able to arrange for patients to attend the Psychiatric Clinic
for treatment etc., thus probably being the means of avoiding the need for admission to a mental
hospital. They were also able to give helpful advice in many other ways.
Patients are conveyed to hospital by the Council's sitting~case cars, or by ambulance if
necessary.
AFTER CARE. After 5th July the main after-care work was continued by the Psychiatric
Social Worker of Goodmayes Mental Hospital.
The Psychiatric Social Club, operated from premises in the borough,, was taken over by the
Health Committee on the ''appointed day'' the staff of the Mental Hospital, however, continued to
carry out the valuable work of conducting the club, This club, which is held weekly, and is attended
by patients referred from the Psychiatric Clinic, or from mental hospitals on discharge, etc.,
provides in practical form the means by which patients, guided by a psychiatrist and a social worker,
can secure social re-adjustment and regain sufficient confidence to become useful members of the
community.
MENTAL DEPICIENCY. On the 31st December, 1948 the number of mental defectives on the register
(excluding those in institutions Hinder Order) was 300. Of this number 256 were ascertained to be
"subject to be dealt with''.

The manner in which these defectives had been dealt with is shown in the following table:»

A. Mental defectives ascertained to be subject to be dealt with''

MfTotal
Under Guardianship257
Under Statutory Supervision111119230
Action not yet taken under the above headings10919
Bo Mental defectives not at present ®subject to be dealt with* but for whom the local health authority may subsequently become liable13
Total154146300
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Ascertainment. The number of mental defectives ascertained during the year was 31 (15
males and 16 females}. Included in this number are 15 cases (9 males and 6 females) who were
reported by the local education authority. Of the new cases 15 were recommended for institutional
care; 7 of these (2 males and 5 females) were admitted to institutions, and 8 cases were await-
32


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