JAMA 100 Years Ago Section Editor: Jennifer Reiling, Assistant Editor.
The longer formal addresses at the recent dedication of the Harvard Medical School are noteworthy productions. President Eliot discusses in a most intelligent and sympathetic manner “The Future of Medicine,” and Professor Welch, with his customary broad grasp and clearness, dwells on “The Unity of the Medical Sciences.”1
President Eliot lays stress on the fact that in the past the physician devoted himself very largely to the treatment of diseases already developed and injuries already incurred. There will always be need for services of this kind and for medical schools to fit men for such service. But in the future more than in the past the medical profession must concern itself with the prevention of disease. Hence the study of the causes of disease and of the means of prevention must be continued with increasing energy. Not only must liberal provision be made for scientific investigators to make discoveries and create new knowledge, but medical men must see to it that intelligent practical application is made of the new knowledge for the protection of the health of human beings in all sorts of climates and environments. It is not enough that the epochal work of Reed and his colleagues proved how yellow fever is communicated—for years physicians must teach the people of the South how they now can protect themselves successfully against yellow fever.
PRESIDENT ELIOT AND THE FUTURE OF MEDICINE.. JAMA. 2006;296(16):2037. doi:10.1001/jama.296.16.2037-a