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The Florence R. Sabin Papers

Letter from Ward Darley to Florence R. Sabin pdf (285,794 Bytes) transcript of pdf
Letter from Ward Darley to Florence R. Sabin
Darley, representing the University of Colorado Medical School, provides some opinions about the post-war planning committee and asks Sabin to brainstorm about possible ways to enlist the state's medical and public health associations in post-war reform efforts.
Number of Image Pages:
3 (285,794 Bytes)
1945-01-23 (January 23, 1945)
Darley, Ward
Sabin, Florence R.
Original Repository: Smith College. Sophia Smith Collection. Florence Rena Sabin Papers
Reproduced with permission of the University of Colorado Hospital.
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
Public Health
Exhibit Category:
Sabin's Third Career: Public Health in Colorado, 1939-1951
Box Number: 22
Folder Number: 8
Unique Identifier:
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Physical Condition:
January 23, 1945
My dear Dr. Sabin:
After the first meeting last Tuesday of the Governor's Committee on Post War Planning, it is quite apparent that the member representing "Health" has a very large order to fill.
The Governor reiterated his belief concerning the impracticability of very much anticipatory legislation at the present time, but he emphasized the importance of intensive constructive thought now about post war problems so that in the eventuality of war's end a special session of the legislature can go to work promptly and as intelligently as possible. It is the assignment of every member of the Committee to study his or her particular field and to outline a concept of problems and solutions that must be faced after the war. While the Governor does not feel that now is the time for the legislature to clutter up our statutes with measures aimed at the final solution for these problems, he is insistent that the Committee members be prompt in getting at their work so that any legislation definitely necessary at this time can be attended to. To this end he has called the next meeting for February 1, 1945, and each member should be prepared with a report outlining general problems which should be anticipated. He is particularly concerned, however, at this time, for any report concerning the necessity of legislative action that may be necessary at the present session. Such recommendations by the Committee have already been protected by the introduction into the legislature of "Bills by Title."
All of this seems to me as the opportunity for organized medicine of this state to justify its existence, and it also seems to me that it is the opportunity for the Medical School and the State Society to show that mutual cooperation can result in some good for the community.
The following course of action seems to me at the present time to be indicated:
As to anticipating the general nature of the many problems relative to health and also as to working out possible solutions, the help of the many special committees of the State Medical Society should be solicited. (Medical Education and Hospitals, Medical Economics, Rehabilitation, Public Health, Cancer Control, Tuberculosis Control, Venereal Disease Control, Industrial Health, Maternal and Child Welfare). Other organizations interested in health should no doubt be invited to contribute help. I have in mind particularly the Colorado State Hospital Association, the Colorado Public Health Association, the Colorado Tuberculosis Association, the Colorado Society for the Control of Cancer and the Colorado Crippled Children's Association. No doubt most of these organizations have special committees set up which could function. As far as the Colorado State Medical Society is concerned, many of these committees have never amounted to much. Now is their chance. The Governor already has a special committee assigned to the problem of rehabilitation. How far-reaching the work of this committee is intended to be, I do not know as yet, but unnecessary over-lapping should be avoided. It might be that the various organizations listed above might prefer to assign to you a special committee to help with the working out of these problems and, in all probability, the Medical School should be added to the organizations as listed.
From the standpoint of immediate legislative consideration, I think the most urgent matter concerns the present Medical School situation. This is so because of our effort to modernize methods for the teaching of medical students, interns and residents; to develop a program of research; to organize a system of graduate instruction. It should be apparent that all of this is very necessary if the School is to cope with the health educational aspects of post-war conditions. This means a larger full-time faculty, adequately paid so that full time and energy can be directed to these problems. The time for setting up the framework of this reorganization is now, not only because of the present shortage of medical teachers, but because delay to war's end will be another instance of "too little and too late." In other words, the present Medical School appropriation is of vital importance to the program.
This position of the Medical School, however, must be evaluated in proper relationship to educational problems in general. All educational facilities and standards must be maintained. For this reason I believe the part of the first report dealing with these matters should be checked over ahead of time with Dr. George Frasier, President of the Colorado State Teachers College, who represents education on the Governor's Committee. I hope that the legislature does not intend to economize too much on our state educational institutions. The field of medicine is the great common meeting ground for all of the arts and sciences, and the consideration of pre-medical education must not be lost sight of.
I do not know whether the report due February 1 should make reference to the Public Health legislation now under consideration. I am attending tonight a meeting at which this new bill is being discussed, and I may have more definite ideas regarding this point later on.
I believe that if the report of the State Society-Medical School Liaison Committee is accepted in principle by the Board of Regents, and that if the present effort of the Medical School to curtail the outside practice of its full-time faculty members is successful, the ground work will be laid for the successful cooperation of the School and the Society in any reasonable post-war program. It must be realized that many aspects of these problems will involve controversy. If the two organizations will only declare that their guiding principle is based upon what seems best for the state as a whole, regardless of what comes, I believe that all controversies can be properly dealt with. At any rate, I am anxious to present the whole problem to the proper authorities of the State Society with the hope that the very first report, due February 1, 1945, will receive their blessing.
I will communicate with you at the earliest possible time as to the details of the first report. In the meantime, put on your thinking cap and, if you have time, I certainly would like to hear from you as to ideas. As you can see, they are badly needed.
I sincerely hope that your trip to New York was a comfortable one. During your absence I assure you that I will do my best to fill this assignment, but I will be mighty glad when you return.
With kindest personal regards, I am
Sincerely yours,
Ward Darley, M. D.
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