Reference was made a few weeks ago1 to the care and ultimate disposition of foreign-born lepers. The suggestion was then made that the Federal Government should make some additional provision for their deportation. The unfortunate circumstances surrounding the death of the Syrian leper at Pickens, West Virginia, and the dilemma in which he and the authorities of two states had been placed prior to his death, again recalls the great need of adequate means of dealing with the disease in this country.
The question is also of moment because more than one-half of the lepers in the United States are native born. According to the report2 of the Commission authorized by Congress in 1899 to investigate the origin and prevalence of the disease in the United States, there were 278 cases residing in the various states in 1902, the time of this report, and, of this number, 145
THE NATIONAL CONTROL OF LEPROSY.. JAMA. 1906;XLVII(18):1491–1492. doi:10.1001/jama.1906.02520180067005