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

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Walthamstow 1904

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Walthamstow]

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The special efforts of former years were continued in this, and leaflets
on " Infant Feeding " and the prevention of Summer Diarrhoea were
freely distributed. I have attributed, on former occasions, good results
from these efforts and how far they are successful, is difficult to gauge.
On many occasions I have had personal testimony from mothers of the
usefulness of these leaflets, and doubtless with the advent of our Lady
Health Visitor, better results await us from a more judicious distribution.
Enquiries were made in all the cases of death, and in this way 153
were investigated as to the social condition of the parents, whether they
occupied a house, half house or were lodgers; whether the sites of the
houses were concreted and yards paved; into the water supply, whether
direct from the main or indirectly through a cistern; whether the
mothers were employed other than in domestic duties; the length of
time of the babies' illness, and as to the kind of food supplied them. At
the same time information was obtained as to the average number of
persons per house, the cleanliness of rooms and the flushing arrangements
of water closets.

The distribution was as follows:—

Houses.Half-houses.Flats.Dirty rooms.
St. James Street1812110
High Street7761
Hoe Street10330
Wood Street11111 old cottage11
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In no case was the father out of work, and the mothers were engaged in other than domestic duties as follows :—

St. James's Street.High Street.Hoe Street.
At Home.Away.At Home.Away.At Home.Away.
Wood Street.Northern.
At Home.Away.At Home.Away.
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Over 90 per cent. of the yards were paved, and over 50 per cent. of
the sites concreted, and no serious sanitary defects were found. The

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