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continued on duty until the spring of 1897, when, being ordered to examination for promotion and feeling assured that he could not pass the required physical examination, he reported the fact to the Bureau, and was, after being physically examined, placed on waiting orders, as already mentioned. The last nine months of his life were spent at health resorts in Colorado and New Mexico.
Dr. Prochazka was unmarried, but leaves an aged father and devoted sister to mourn his loss.
Assistant Surgeon Prochazka was an officer of more than ordinary professional ability, having made excellent use of very superior advantages. Personally he was modest, reserved, and devoted to study and scientific research; honorable in all intercourse with his associates, by whom he was held in high esteem as a man and an officer.
Respectfully, yours, WALTER WYMAN,
Of the two medical officers of the Service reported in my last annual report to be incapacitated from duty on account of tuberculosis one has died during the year, as above narrated, while the other, after returning to duty and so remaining for some months, has again been placed on waiting orders.
MEASURES FOR THE RELIEF OF THE LEGAL REPRESENTATIVES OF THE LATE ASST. SURG. JOHN W. BRANHAM.
Referring to the comments in my last annual report upon the abovenamed measure, it is gratifying to be enabled to report that during the last session of Congress the bill for the relief of the heirs of Assistant Surgeon Branham passed the House of Representatives and the act authorizing the payment to the heirs the sum of $4,160—the amount of salary and allowances for an assistant surgeon for two years at the date of the death of Dr. Branham—was approved by the President June 15, 1898. The bill passed the Senate May 20, 1896.
The circumstances of his death, while in the performance of his duty, are set forth in your letter to the President of the United States, transmitting the bill to him, and stating your opinion that the measure was a meritorious one, of which the following is a copy:
TREASURY DEPARTMENT, Washington, D.C., June 14, 1898.
SIR: Referring to the accompanying act (H.R. 2425) sent to me for examination and with the request that I will state whether I know of any objection to its approval, I have the honor to report that on the 20th of July, 1893, the President of the United States, under section 3, national quarantine act, approved February 15, 1893, detailed Asst. Surg. John W. Branham, United States Marine-Hospital Service, to proceed at once to Brunswick, Ga., where the local quarantine authorities had failed to enforce the quarantine regulations of this Department, and to take charge of the quarantine. He immediately proceeded to Brunswick, and on the 20th of August, 1893, died of yellow fever contracted while in discharge of the duties assigned him. Dr. Branham left a widow with two infant children without means of support.
I am of the opinion that the act is a meritorious one and should become a law.
L. J. GAGE, Secretary. The PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES.
The following is the act in question: AN ACT for the relief of the legal representatives of John W. Branham, late an assistant surgeon
in the United States Marine-Hospital Service. Whereas John W. Branham, late an assistant surgeon in the United States Marine-Hospital Service, contracted yellow fever while performing his duty as assistant surgeon in an infected city, and having died of yellow fever at his post of duty on the twentieth day of August, eighteen hundred and ninety-three: Therefore,
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the Secretary of the Treasury be, and he is hereby, authorized and directed to pay, out of the money not otherwise appropriated, to the legal representatives of John W. Branham the sum of four thousand one hundred and sixty dollars, being the amount of salary and allowances for two years.
Approved, June 15, 1898. OFFICERS DETAILED TO REPRESENT THE UNITED STATES MARINE
HOSPITAL SERVICE AT MEETINGS OF MEDICAL AND PUBLIC HEALTH ASSOCIATIONS.
Since the date of my last report the following details have been made:
Surg. J. M. Gassaway and P. A. Surg. J. J. Kinyoun to represent the Service at the meeting of the American Medical Association held at Denver, Colo., June 7–10, 1898.
Surg. Robert D. Murray and Surg. H. R. Carter to represent the Service at the quarantine conference held at Atlanta, Ga., April 12, 1898.
Surg. II. R. Carter to represent the Service at a quarantine conference held at New Orleans, La., April 8, 1898.
Surg. Charles E. Banks detailed by the President as delegate to the meeting at Madrid, Spain, of the Ninth International Congress of Hygiene and Demography, held April 10–17, 1898.
Surg. Charles E. Banks and P. A. Surg. J. J. Kinyoun to represent the Service at the meeting of the National Pure Food and Drug Congress held at Washington, D. C., March 1, 1898.
Surg. H. R. Carter, P. A. Surg. J. II. White, and P. A. Surg. A. C. Smith detailed to represent the Service at the quarantine convention of the South Atlantic and Gulf States held at Mobile, Ala., February 9, 10, and 11, 1898.
P. A. Surg. S. D. Brooks to represent the Service at the meeting of the Washington State Medical Society, May, 1898. REPORT OF SURG. J. M. GASSAWAY ON THE FORTY-NINTH ANNUAL MEETING OF THE AMERICAN PUBLIC HEALTH ASSOCIATION, HELD AT DENVER, Colo., JUNE 7-10, 1898.
OFFICE OF MEDICAL OFFICER IN COMMAND M. H. S.,
Port of San Francisco, Cal., August 19, 1898. SIR: I have the honor to report having attended the forty-ninth annual meeting of the American Medical Association at Denver, Colo., on June 7, 8, 9, 10, 1898, in obedience to detail conveyed by Bureau letter P. M. C., May 18, 1898. On the adjournment of the association I rejoined my station, arriving June 14, 1898.
Probably no previous meeting of the association has been presented with so rich a programme of scientific essays and so charming a variety of intellectual entertainment. The local faculty, the citizens, and the railroads vied with each other in banquets, receptions, and excursions, which, with the more than full registers of the several sections, embarrassed with its very richness the delegates, and undoubtedly drew many away from the more serious, if not more important, sessions of the association proper. As a result, the address on surgery by Dr. J. B. Murphy, of Chicago, Ill., to be read in the open meeting, although of most tremendous importance as an entirely new view in the treatment of tuberculosis, was given but a half hour of time, and the distinguished author was able only to read the heads of his essay. It is, fortunately, printed in full in the journal of the association. In the sections many of the most promising papers were read only by title, a physical impossibility to crowd them into the time allowed.
At the second general session, June 8, Dr. W. H. Sanders, State health officer of Alabama, offered a series of resolutions in regard to the public health, as follows:
[Resolutions submitted to the American Medical Association at the Denver meeting, June 8, 1898, by W. H. Sanders, M.D., health officer of Alabama.]
Whereas the protection of the public health is one of the duties and functions of all well organized and progressive governments: Therefore, be it Resolved (1), That it is the sense of this body that a public-health system, correct in principle, complete in detail, and applicable alike to every part of the country should, at the earliest time possible, be created and put into vigorous operation. Resolved (2), That in order for such a system to be constitutional, coherent, and permanent, it should logically conform to the genius and plan of our concentric systems of government—that is to say, its roots should be deeply planted among the people, the recognized source of governmental power under our Constitution, and its branches should reach up through and be sustained by every political division of our State governments to one central and resourceful power, the nation. Resolved (3), That to lay the foundations for such a system the States should formulate their policies of public health with sufficient uniformity as to render them susceptible of being united into one symmetrical and harmonious whole, and to lead up to and terminate in one central and cooperative head, namely, the General Government acting through a bureau of public health. “Resolved (4), That while the officials for actively conducting a public health system should be of local origin and authority, and therefore directly and proximately responsible to the people, the States and the nation should cooperate with the local authorities in furnishing the expert skill and financial aid necessary for suppressing dangerous, contagious, and epidemic diseases when they appear in any given locality, and for preventing their spread from one part of a State to another part of the same State, or from one State to another State. “Resolved (5), That the principles herein announced should apply to the theory and practice of quarantine, which, although an important part and function of a public health system, is not the only one of its numerous and beneficent powers. To divorce the exercise of quarantine power from a public health system and to confer it upon a separate organization which derives its existence and vitality from the General Government, and not from the people of the States, would be to emasculate and ultimately to destroy said system, as well as to overthrow one of the most sacred and valued principles upon which our Government is founded. “Resolved (6), That an earnest appeal is hereby made to the Congress of the United States to recognize the principles herein proclaimed as constitutional and unassailable and as in thorough accord with the generic truths out of which our political fabric has been evolved.”
These resolutions having been read by the author, were referred, under the rule, to the business (or executive) committee. Dr. Sanders, however, moved their adoption as an expression of the opinion of the association on the matters treated of, which was, according to the official report of the proceedings, “ seconded and carried.” It would appear, however, from the same official report, that Dr. Sanders asked, on the third day's session, as to what disposition had been made of his resolutions. Thereupon, on motion, the resolutions were (same official report) referred to the business committee, with power to act.
The business committee, however, on examining them, concluded that it was not competent for that committee to take any action in the matter, and so they were laid on the table by that committee.
It will be observed that the official report of the business committee's report, June 9, 1898, does not speak of these resolutions. It is difficult to know whether they are approved by the association or not.
It is proper to state here that through some misadvertence the original of these resolutions was withdrawn from the secretary's table and no copy of them could be had until after considerable correspondence, which brought me simultaneously within the past six days copies from Dr. Sanders himself and from the chairman of the executive committee.
On the evening of the second or the morning of third day the report of the special committee on department of public health, neatly printed in small pamphlet form, was distributed to the association. At the proper time during the third day's session the chairman of that committee, Dr. U.O.B. Wingate, of Milwaukee, Wis., began its reading, and after some minutes, possibly one-quarter of it having been read, the further reading was dispensed with, and some discussion ensued which terminated in a motion that the report, with the resolutions, be adopted, except that the clause appropriating $1,000 be referred to the board of trustees, with power to act. This motion was promptly seconded, and although this reporter, with some other members of the association, attempted vigorously to get the floor to debate upon or otherwise express their opinions on the subject, the ayes and noes were immediately taken and the report and the resolutions declared adopted.
This somewhat unusual procedure (that is, of not referring the report to the appropriate committee) was doubtless due to the statement made on the floor of the association that this matter had been seven years in preparation by its committee and that it should not be referred, like other similar matters, to the business committee, because that committee has no business with it.
This meeting was next to the largest (Philadelphia, 1897) yet had by the association, and many of the members were much disappointed at the absence of the president, Surg. Gen. George M. Sternberg, U.S. A., detained by pressing official business. Respectfully, yours,
JAMES M. GASSAWAY,
Surgeon, U. S. M. H. S. SURGEON-GENERAL MARINE-HOSPITAL SERVICE.
REPORT OF SURG. CHARLES E. BANKS, DELEGATE TO THE NINTH INTERNATIONAL
CONGRESS OF HYGIENE AND DEMOGRAPHY, HELD AT MADRID, APRIL 10-17, 1898.
SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of services rendered in connection with my detail as delegate, on the part of the Department, to represent the Government at the International Congress of Hygiene and Demography, held at Madrid, Spain, April 10 to 17, 1898.
As a prelininary to the subject-matter of the report, I desire to refer to the date of my orders, March 15, 1898, which, as will be seen by a reference to international
events then pending, brought my contemplated trip to the very brink of war between this Government and Spain. Indeed, after the receipt of the order the existing difficulties between the two nations had reached such a point that I had practically abandoned the expectation of going. An apparent improvement in the strained relations a few days prior to the date of my departure, however, induced you to approve my attempting to fulfill my mission, and I hastily started for New York to take passage by steamer on the 26th of March. While I was crossing the Atlantic the long-expected report of the board of inquiry into the disaster to the U.S. S. Maine was made, and upon my arrival in London the excitement had intensified and the relations between the two countries had become more strained. Acting upon your verbal instructions after my arrival in London to consult with our diplomatic representatives abroad as to the situation and the desirability of proceeding to Madrid, I did so, and was advised from day to day to await developments. I endeavored to secure by letter and telegraph advices from our legation at Madrid, both before and after arrival in London, but did not receive any reply. I occupied such time as I could, while awaiting events to transpire, in carrying out the directions of your letter of March 16 with respect to an examination of the hospital ambulance systems abroad and the hospital equipments of all hospitals in the course of my journey, a report of which is made in a separate communication. I proceeded to Paris on the 8th of April, still uncertain as to the probability of reaching my destination, arriving there on the night of the same day, with the expectation of consulting our ambassador in Paris. In consequence of the legal holidays which intervened—Easter Sunday and Easter Monday—and his absence from the city I was unable to see him until the 12th instant, during which time the President's message to Congress had been delivered, asking authority to intervene, and the rupture of relations between the two countries was practically settled. The family of our minister at Madrid had left that city in anticipation of the immediate severance of diplomatic relations, and it was currently reported, though definite information was unobtainable at our embassy in Paris, that our minister was also on the point of leaving or had left. I determined, however, on the 12th instant to proceed and ascertain by personal observation the chances of accomplishing my mission. I reached Madrid on the 13th, at midnight, and found the congress in session the next day. After enrolling myself as a delegate I was presented to the secretary of the congress and made known my official standing. I was not surprised, however, at the unmistakable character of the greeting accorded me, nor could I take exception to its pronounced formality, considering the situation. The prevailing sentiment was of unconcealed hostility to the United States and the tone of the surroundings was, therefore, anything but pleasant. This is not remarked as a complaint, but as the inevitable condition of impending hostilities and the natural sympathy of European delegates with a neighboring people—a sympathy that was openly avowed by delegates from Republics on this hemisphere. The attendance was stated to be about 1,500 members, representing twenty-six countries, of which 1,350 were from Spain, 110 from France, 50 from Great Britain, and 48 from Germany. Of the latter representation it should be stated that 22 were “official” delegates from the Imperial Government, as showing how other nations recognize such events. In the “Lista Provisional de Delegados” 5 were accredited to the United States—1 from the Army, 1 from the Marine-Hospital Service, and 3 others from civil life. It is not known that these latter attended, but I met, in addition to the Army representative, a medical officer of the Navy, whose name did not appear on the official list. Of noted men in attendance, I might mention Pagliani, of Rome; Brouardel, of Paris; Mahmoud Pasha, of Constantinople; Surgeon-General MacPherson, of London; Professors Behring, Loeffler, and Liebrich, of Germany.