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When passing through an institution for the care of the insane the visitor is usually impressed with the same unhappy picture, namely, the great number of patients sitting about, in the rooms and corridors of their wards, with no occupation whatever, careless and indifferent, compelled to remain thus practically hour after hour, day after day, many of them even year after year. Can we wonder that so many of our insane descend step by step to the most hopeless dementia? Should we be astonished that the percentage of recoveries, or improvement even, is relatively so small as long as this condition is permitted to exist?
There are probably few hospitals for the insane which do not deplore this condition. On all sides efforts are being made to relieve this situation. The question naturally arises how best to supply occupation and entertainment to these people. Each hospital endeavors to furnish as
COHN E. THE SYSTEMATIC OCCUPATION AND ENTERTAINMENT OF THE INSANE IN PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS.. JAMA. 1908;L(16):1249–1251. doi:10.1001/jama.1908.25310420017001g