The more or less effective regulations to protect the public from persons afficted with a contagious disease are naturally enforced only in cases that are reported to the health authorities. The unrecognized case is subjected to no restrictions at all; the recognized but unreported case only to those the family voluntarily observes.
It has been my belief that the spread of contagious disease occurs chiefly through the unreported and particularly the unrecognized cases. Until every case is brought under the control of the health authorities no real progress will be made toward limiting or stamping out communicable disease.
For each reported case of notifiable disease there arc many unreported. Some physicians even make a practice of not reporting their cases, for which very reason they are employed by families who desire to avoid restrictive measures. A premium is thus placed on dishonesty, the physician who evades the law
SOLIS-COHEN M. REPORTING OF SUSPICIOUS CASES BY THE LAITY A PREREQUISITE TO THE EFFICIENT CONTROL OF COMMUNICABLE DISEASES. JAMA. 1912;LIX(13):1177-1180. doi:10.1001/jama.1912.04270090421012