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HH62/2/ROSS/25

Transcription

[Page] 24

are set down to cancer, and an equal number to pneumonia,
while diarrhoea is credited with 21 (far too high, and implies
bad infant feeding, and probably a dearth of milk), of measles
there are 5, of typhoid fever 4, of diptheria none, but of
croup 2, there were also 2 from whooping-cough, and 25 are
set down to consumption, &c. The uncertified amount to 46.

In Tarbat the population amounts to 1773, while the
deaths were 147 in the five years referred to. Of these 7 (a
very high proportion) are set down to cancer, 1 to pneumonia,
2 to diphtheria, 3 to scarlatina, 2 to typhoid, and 3 to
whooping-cough, while 11 are said to be connected with con-
sumption and its allies. About one-third are not certified.

Urray (population, 2367.4). The deaths for 5 years
sum up to 145. 1 is put down to cancer, and the same
number to blood poisoning, puerperal fever, scarlatina, and
croup, and 2 to diphtheria. There were 2 also from pneu-
monia, while there were 6 from typhoid, and only 3 are put
down to consumption, &c. There is the very large number
of 83 uncertified, which is hard to understand with four or
five doctors practising within the parish. Certainly there is
no resident doctor, and many are far away from medical aid.

Uig (population, 2352) had 137 deaths in the period of 5
years. Here there must have been a great deal of influenza,
as the record shows 16 deaths. There was also the startling
number of 12 deaths from tetanus. 1 is ascribed to cancer,
2 to pneumonia, 3 to erysipelas, 2 to measles, 1 to puerperal
fever, none to typhus, none to diphtheria, but 6 to croup, 1
to whooping-cough, and 18 to consumption, &c. The propor-
tion of uncertified is a little over one-fourth.

Urquhart, or Ferintosh (population, 2406.8) concludes
our lists of districts. The deaths amounted to 201. Cancer
counts for 3, pneumonia, typhoid fever, and whooping-cough
for 1, diphtheria and croup for 2 each, scarlatina for 3, while
consumption, &c., are set down for 16. The uncertified are at
a rate of nearly 1 in 3.

Note. - The population is the estimated mean number
living, for the period of 5 years - '85, '86, 87, '88, and '89 -
under consideration.

[Page] 25

Looking at these results as a whole the most striking fact,
where the deaths are fairly well certified is, the large propor-
tion of them, which are due to tuberculous diseases, i.e., to con-
sumption and its allies. These, in many cases, amount to 12
per cent. If we consider that a certain number is put down to
pneumonia, a larger still to bronchitis and pleurisy - that
tuberculous disease attacking the abdomen, is frequently certi-
fied as due to dioerrhea, and probably a considerable propor-
tion of the uncertified cases of which in every district there is
a large number, is composed of cases of tuberculous disease;
I believe we shall not be far wrong in alleging that tuber-
culous diseases probably account for 20 per cent. or one-fifth
of the whole mortality. It is pleasing to think that cancer is
not credited generally with many deaths, though here too it
need not be doubted that amongst uncertified cases a large
number is really due to cancer, it being a disease in the
majority of cases of degenerating old age. I think it will be
surprising to many as it was to me to find so many deaths
ascribed to pneumonia. It will be very interesting to discover
later what part of this rate is due to "infectious" pneumonia.
It is gratifying to be assured that there are not many deaths con.
nected with lying in or the puerperal period. It is also a
pleasure to !earn that smallpox was not the cause of a single
death in the period examined, and that scarlatina and typhoid
were not fatal to many. On the other hand whooping-cough,
measles, typhus and diphtheria must have prevailed largely;
and they undoubtedly caused many a fatal issue. But a study
of the facts as recorded prove that these were very unequally
distributed and as portions of most districts escaped so should,
with proper precautions, all. Whooping-cough and measles
visit in turn almost all localities, but they are not equally fatal
everywhere. Something must be set down to the age of
those attacked. Where there are many very young children
in proportion to the older people it follows that the mortality
will be heavier - and this is the condition of things where the
population is increasing most rapidly, and where too the
dangers of overcrowding are worst, say in towns and in fisher
townships. The remedy here is plain, to prevent overcrowd-
ing and discourage too early marriages to be secured coin-

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