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Washington, Hon. W. B. Harris, a copy of the report of "The Bureau of Education," entitled "Professional Education in the United States, Etc.," sent in return for copies of our reports. Our Sixth Annual Report was sent to the secretaries of the boards of many other States, and their reports have been received in exchange. The New Jersey report is especially attractive. Their law gives satisfaction, and works well. The report says: "It remains for the proper enforcement of the law to elevate the profession of medicine in this State to a higher position than it has yet attained." "The elevation of the standard of medical education will alone free our State from medical charlatans and impostors." "The license of the State should be the guarantee to the public that its possessor is well qualified by a thorough scientific and practical medical education to successfully conserve public health." In the report of the Secretary it is shown that from 1772 to 1854, under medical restriction laws, the profession attained to an admittedly high standard of excellence and brought honor to the State. Neither quacks nor charlatans existed. In 1854 the law was repealed, and was not re-enacted till 1880, and during that time the State was overrun. Since the present law was enacted, in 1890, the State has been again nearly freed from the vampires. The law has the moral support of the whole profession, and even midwives are licensed, and licenses issued can be revoked.
Not more than a week ago I received a letter from a member of the Legislative Committee of Vermont asking for a copy of our law, rules and regulations. They were promptly furnished, but I suggested that they procure and pass, if possible, the New Jersey law. Several more States have fallen into line in regulating the practice of medicine, and, almost without exception, the rule has been to recognize no diplomas-examine all.
Amendments have been presented to the Legislature for passage improving our law. I submit the following copy:
An Act to amend Chapter 178 of the Acts of the General Assembly of 1889, passed April 3, 1889, and approved April 4, 1889, entitled "An Act to regulate the Practice of Medicine and Surgery in the State of Tennessee, and to amend Chapter 109 of the Acts of 1891, amendatory of said Chapter and Acts of 1889."
Section 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Tennessee, That the first section of Chapter 178 of the Act of 1889 be so amended as to strike out all of said section from the word "person," in the third line, to the word "and,” in the twelfth, and insert the words, "obtain a certificate from the State Board of Medical Examiners, or shall obtain a temporary license, as provided in Section 5."
Section 2. Be it further enacted, That the third section of said Act of 1889 be so amended as to strike out all of said section from the word "present," in the third line, to the word "himself," in the fifth line, and in the seventh line strike out the word "therapeutics," and insert the words, "materia medica and practice," and further amend by striking out the words, "If the diploma be found genuine, or," in the seventh and eighth lines.
Section 3. Be it further enacted, That the fifth section of said Act of 1889 be so amended as to insert after the word "applicant,' in the third line of said section, the following words, to wit: "who is permanently located as a resident of some designated place in this State."
Section 4. Be it further enacted, That the tenth section of said Act of 1889 be so amended as to insert after the word "conferred," in the seventh line of said section, the following words, to-wit: "and that the clerk hereafter, beginning the first Monday in July next, and at the end of every six months thereafter, report to the Secretary of the Board of Medical Examiners all such registrations in his office, together with a list of the deaths and the removals from his county of those physicians who have registered, or may hereafter register in his office; for which service the clerk shall be paid by the treasurer out of the funds of the Board of Medical Examiners ten cents for each name so reported."
Section 5. Be it further enacted, That the twelfth section of said Act of 1889 be so amended as to strike out from the ninth and tenth lines of said section the following words and figures, to wit: "The Board is empowered to demand a fee of one ($1) dollar for the issuance of each certificate," and to insert in the place thereof the following words and figures, to wit: "The Board is empowered to demand a fee of five ($5) dollars for the
issuance of each certificate, and amend further by striking out the word 'non-graduates'" in the eleventh line.
Section 6. Be it further enacted, That the third section of Chapter 109 of the Acts of 1891, passed March 23, 1891, and being amendatory of Chapter 178 of the Acts of 1889, be so amended as to insert after the word "dollars," in the nineteenth line of said third section, the following words, to-wit: "and all such fines for offenses under this Act shall be paid over to the Treasurer of the Board of Medical Examiners to constitute a part of the funds of said Board."
Section 7. Be it further enacted, That the provisions of this Act shall not apply to physicians or surgeons of other States who may be called by any reputable, registered practitioner in this State into actual consultation in regard to some case under his supervision and care.
Section 8. Be it further enacted, That any person shall be regarded as practicing medicine or surgery, within the meaning of this Act, who shall use the words or letters, "Dr." "Doctor," "Professor," "M.D.," or "M.B.," in connection with his or her name, or any other title intending to imply or designate him or her as a practitioner of medicine or surgery in any of its branches, and who, in connection with such title, or titles, or without the use of such titles, shall prescribe, direct, recommend, advise, apply, give, or sell, for the use of any person or persons, any drug or medicine, or other agency or application for the treatment, cure, or relief of any bodily infirmity, injury, or disease; and it is further provided that the use of any one of the afore-mentioned titles, or the exposure of a sign, circular, advertisement, or any other device or information, indicating thereby the occupation of the person, or persons, shall be considered prima facie evidence; and it is further provided that the provisions of this Act shall apply to all persons professing and attempting to cure diseases by means of the so-called systems of "faith-curism," "mind-healing," "laying-on-of-hands," and all other similar systems.
Section 9. Be it further enacted, That this Act take effect from and after its passage, the public welfare requiring it.
An effort should be made to provide some way by which licenses issued may be revoked, but this can wait, as many are
awaking to the fact that a drunkard or an opium-eater is not, as a rule, qualified to prescribe for the sick.
My former report was printed and copies sent to all the members of the Board.
By some inadvertence on the part of the printer, after the proof-sheets had been corrected and returned, one page was entirely omitted, thus marring the paper.
I have issued certificates during the past year to parties whose diplomas had been passed upon by the Board at its annual meeting, February 26 and 27, 1896, 117 in number, and duplicated one (number 835); and in addition four (4) certificates were issued to non-graduates on examinations duly held by the Board, thus making a total of 122 certificates issued during the year. I have received an application from another party for a duplicate certificate, but have notified him to make affidavit to his loss. The one which I duplicated was returned to me, ruined, by some accident.
The term of your Secretary, T. J. Happel, M.D., having expired, Gov. Turney reappointed him for another period of six years.
REPORTS OF MEMBERS OF THE BOARD.
The following reports from the different members of the Board have been received by me, and all moneys sent in by them receipted for, and proper enteries made in the books of your Treasurer.
HEBER JONES, M.D., President, reports that, in connection with Dr. Happel, he has examined and granted temporary licenses to seven (7) parties, and has examined and rejected one, collecting therefrom, in all, $82.00; that he has issued temporary licenses to twenty parties on diplomas presented and verified, collecting from each a fee of $1.00, making a total of $20.00, aggregate, $102.00, for which amount he holds your Secretary's receipt.
W. H. HALBERT, M.D., Vice-President, reports that he, in connection with Dr. Pillow, examined nine (9) non-graduates, granting temporary licenses to eight (8), rejecting one, collecting the fees, amounting to $93.00; that he issued thirty-one temporary licenses on diplomas verified, collecting therefrom $31.00,
making an aggregate of $124.00. For this amount, and $1.00 in addition for one certificate, he holds your Secretary's receipt.
ROBERT PILLOW, M.D., reports that he, in conjunction with Dr. Halbert, examined and verified three (3) diplomas, granting temporary licenses thereon, and collecting the ususual fee on each; total, $3.00. This amount he has turned over to your Secretary, and for it he holds his receipt.
E. E. HUNTER, M.D., reports that he, together with Dr. McCreary, examined three (3) non-graduates, applying for license to practice between lectures, and that to each one he issued temporary license, collecting from them $32.00, for which amount he holds your Secretary's receipt.
W. L. MCCREARY, M.D., reports that, in connection with Dr. Hunter, he examined thirteen (13) non-graduates, granting temporary licenses to twelve, and rejecting one, collecting from them a total of $137.00, and that he issued twenty-three temporary licenses on that number of diplomas examined and verified by him, collecting from that source a total of $23.00; that under orders from the Board, he renewed temporary licenses for six (6) non-graduates who had been attending medical lectures after having been examined the preceding year, having received already temporary licenses, collecting from each of these a fee of $1.00; total, $6.00, aggregate, $166.00. He holds your Secretary's receipt for $167.00.
T. J. HAPPEL, Secretary and Treasurer, reports that he, in connection with Dr. Jones, examined six (6) non-graduates, rejecting one and granting temporary licenses to five (5), collecting from them a total of $60.00; that under orders from the Board he issued temporary licenses to six examinees, whose fees are reported in connection with their examinations; that he renewed temporary licenses to seven applicants who presented their tickets, showing attendance at lectures the preceding term, collecting from them $7.00; that he verified thirty-two (32) diplomas, granting temporary licenses thereon, collecting from the holders $32.00; that he collected, as shown on page 98 of the minute book, of Dr. Hunter $15.00, and of Dr. Halbert $12.00 on examinations and licenses not reported at the time my last balance sheet was made up; that he collected on diplomas presented and stamped for licenses at our annual meeting $4.00,