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

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Shoreditch 1859

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Shoreditch, Parish of St. Leonard]

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The table before you, however, justifies an important conclusion.
It is not a little remarkable that the proportion of registered vaccinations
to births should have risen from G2 per cent. in 1855 to 69 per cent. in
1857, and that it should have fallen to 60 per cent. in 1858 and so low
as 50 per cent. in 1859. Has Vaccination really been less extensively
performed during the last two years ? I fear that the answer must be in
the affirmative.
Great pains have been taken to give the utmost effect to the imperfect
powers at command. The hand-bill printed in the appendix was posted
up in conspicuous places, and copies circulated in courts and houses
where Small-Pox had occurred, and letters were addressed to the clergy
inviting their aid and influence in carrying out the objects of the circular.
House-to-house visitations were made by myself and the Inspectors in
addition to very many scattered inspections of houses where the disease
had appeared. Much personal influence was also exerted by the public
The following summary of the result of inspections of two of the
Parochial Schools, conveys I believe moro accurate information than can
be obtained in other ways. The children found to be not vaccinated, or
in my judgment not protected by the vaccination they had undergone,
were vaccinated on the spot by the assistant of the Public Vaccinator.
I considered this measure to be necessary not only for the primary
purposo of protecting the children, but also for that of arriving at a
complete series of observations that might serve as a reliable basis for
estimating the extent of non-vaccination, and of the number of persons
who arc reposing in false security on the faith of vaccinations that have

Result of Inspection of Two Schools with reference to Protection from Small-Pox.

Total Children.Had Small-Pox.Vaccinated.Not VaccinatedResult or Vaccination.
Scars Good.Scars Bad.Full.ModifiedNone.No return
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