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

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St James's 1860

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for St James's, Westminster]

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altogether 1919. The number of children found
unvaccinated at their parents' homes, was 361;
whilst the number of children found unvaccinated
in the schools, was 110, making altogether 471.
It was ascertained that the greater number of these
were afterwards vaccinated. At the same time the
fact that so large a number of children were found
unvaccinated, shews how very imperfectly the law
for securing the vaccination of the public is carried
out. It is very evident, unless some more stringent
measures are adopted for securing the vaccination
of the population of this Metropolis, that it will be
liable to those epidemic visitations of small pox,
such as has just passed over us, and carried off
above 2000 of our population. It is almost
incredible that such an immense loss of life as this
should have been incurred from the neglect of a
preventive of the most simple and efficacious kind.
If such a number of persons had been killed by
railway accidents, or had been murdered, no efforts
would have been considered too great or too costly
to prevent the recurrence of such a catastrophe ;
but it is to be feared, with this terrible example
before us, that the people are again sinking into
their old apathy, and that another harvest of young
and healthy life is awaiting the sickle of the
destroying angel, to garner it with the other fruits
of human indolence and ignorance.
Although the Tables I now lay before you present
other topics of interest, I forbear at the present
entering upon them. After the publication of the

Since my last Report I have visited other schools in the Parish, which are as follows, with the result stated:—

Dufour's Place,Boys,784
Archbishop Tenison's,412
Swallow Street,Boys,665
Marshall Street,Boys,21810