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Seventy Per Cent of Jewish Children in Russia Are Tubercular, is Report

June 23, 1929
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Seventy per cent of the children of the declassed Jewish masses in cities and towns of Russia are infected with some form of tuberculosis. In order to combat the disease, solariums, day nurseries, clinics for children, milk stations and sanitoria are needed immediately.

This is one of the outstanding items in the working plan and budget of the medical committee of the Joint Distribution Committee in Moscow for the years 1930, 1931 and 1932, made public by David A. Brown, National Chairman of the United Jewish Campaign.

The spread of nervous diseases, due to the hardships suffered during the war and the ensuing social upheaval, is another serious menace of the Jewish urban population of Russia. This situation is aggravated by the lack of hospital accommodations. The Joint Distribution Committee medical committee in Moscow estimates that only six and one-half per cent of the sufferers from nervous ailments are hospital patients, though the hospitals in Minsk and Mogilev are overcrowded.

Cancer, as a menace to Jews, ranks next to tuberculosis. Declassed Jews are denied the necessary X-Ray and surgical treatments which are given only to the “socially insured,” the “productive class,” in which category the “luftmensch” Jew is not included.

The number of Jewish children in White Russia who are suffering from trachoma has undergone an extraordinary increase, due to overcrowding in dwellings, the Joint Distribution Committee medical committee at Moscow states. Blindness is a frequent consequence and the medical committee plans a comprehensive campaign which will be carried out though the Jewish Medical Relief Society as far as possible. It is estimated that the cost of the campaign will be $150,000 a year or $450,000 for the period of three years.

The extent of the medical relief afforded to the Jews of Russia by the medical relief committee of the Joint Distribution Committee is shown in the statistical tables annexed to the working plan and budget for the new campaign.

During the year ending December 31. 1925, the reports show that in 26 polyclinics 228,000 patients received medical aid, and made 589 visits. Over 306,000 prescriptions were filled without cost to the patients. Fifty-three thousand patients were visited by physicians in their homes, and 39,000 bed-days were given to poor patients without charge. In addition, 26,000 patients in the colonies made 58,000 visits to the clinics and received 29,500 free prescriptions, while 2,610 received medical treatment at home. Over 450 tubercular children passed through the day solarium, with a total number of 29,500 days. During the same year more than 13,500 Jewish children were cured of favus at 66 X-Ray stations equipped by the Joint Distribution Committee.

During the following year, 1926, the number of treatments in the 26 polyclinics mounted to 610,000, and the free medical prescriptions to 396,000. In the old Jewish colonies 32,000 patients made 87,000 visits to the clinics, received 34,000 prescriptions, and 3,900 patients received medical treatment at home. The same year 320 consumptive children passed 14,000 days in solariums.

In 1927 the medical situation had become more serious, and with it the efforts to combat this situation were increased. Thus from January 1 to October 1 of that year, the polyclinics, which had grown from 26 to 43, record 1,250,000 visitations, and 201,000 bed-days. Three hundred eighty-nine thousand prescriptions were filled free, and 24,500 patients received medical treatment at home. Fifty-one thousand patients made 118,000 visits to the clinics in the old Jewish colonies, 27,000 free prescriptions were filled and 4,200 patients were treated at home.

That year 8,750 consumptive children were treated and fed in 38 solariums.

Last year, 1,120,000 visits were made to the 43 polyclinics by ailing Jews, who received free 326,800 prescriptions. Twenty-one thousand three hundred were treated at home and 184,500 free bed-days were given in the hospitals. In the colonies, 49,000 patients made 107,600 visits to the clinics and were given 62,000 prescriptions, while 5,100 patients received free home treatment.

One hundred twenty-one thousand eight hundred and thirty bed-days were given to consumptive children in the solariums in addition to special feeding.

Bone tuberculosis, which is becoming increasingly prevalent, brought 420 patients to the institute at Eupatoria, and they received 13,070 bed days.

The Joint Distribution Committee medical committee spent, for the work outlined above until the end of last year. $430,078. The budget for the three-year campaign ending in 1932 takes into consideration that a large part of its cost will be met by the local communities, and that the government will increase the allowances it makes for medical work in the colonies. Another item of importance is the fact that of the 430 physicians and specialists engaged in the work, of whom 98% are Jewish. 19% give their services gratis, the report declares.

The funeral of the late Edgar J. Nathan, who died on Tuesday, was held Thursday from his late home, 441 West End Ave. New York.

Chief Judge Beniamin N. Cardozo of the Court of Appeals. Dr. Cyrus Adler, president of the Jewish Theological Seminary: William Nelson Cromwell, president of the New York County. Lawyers Association: Judge Irving Lehman of the Court of Appeals. Supreme Court Justice Nathan Bijur. Leopold Plaut, president of the Jewish Social Service Association, of which Mr. Nathan was vice-president and trustee; Dr. Henry Moscowitz and N. Taylor Phillips, former Deputy City Controller, were present.

Dr. David de Sola Pool officiated. Burial was in the plot of Shearith Israel Congregation. Cypress Hills Cemetery.

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