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When an enlightened, civilized and progressive nation quietly and passively, year after year, permits a multitude of its people unnecessarily to become blind, and more especially when one-quarter of these are infants, the reason for such a startling condition of affairs demands explanation. That such is the fact practically all reliable ophthalmologists agree.
From a summary of carefully tabulated statistics it has been demonstrated that at least four-tenths of all existing blindness might have been avoided had proper preventative or curative measures been employed, while one-quarter of this, or one-tenth of the whole, is due to ophthalmia neonatorum, an infectious, preventable and almost absolutely curable disease. Perhaps this statement will take on a new meaning when it is added that there are in the State of New York alone more than six thousand and in the United States more than fifty thousand blind people; of these, six hundred in the
LEWIS FP. A PRACTICAL METHOD OF ABOLISHING THE CAUSE OF ONE-QUARTER OF THE UNNECESSARY BLINDNESS IN THE UNITED STATES.. JAMA. 1906;XLVI(17):1262–1265. doi:10.1001/jama.1906.62510440016001c