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To the Editor:—
A number of recent communications in The Journal regarding free physicians' samples prompts me to submit to you the following observations: In the six month period just ended, I have received through the United States mail, both at my home and at my office, advertising literature and generous samples of a wide variety of products comprising 47 packages, weighing in total 6.9 pounds, and 357 pieces of letter mail, weighing in total 22.3 pounds. Estimated on a yearly basis, the cost of postage for this amount of material (58.4 pounds total per annum) would come close to $20. Multiply these figures by the total number of registered physicians receiving such consignments, add to it innumerable duplications, incorrect or obsolete addresses and forwardings, and the total burden on the United States mails mounts to a staggering figure, both in man-hours and in dollars. Surely something can and should
Howe C. FREE SAMPLES. JAMA. 1950;143(12):1114. doi:10.1001/jama.1950.02910470074022