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In the retiring message of the late Governor of Illinois there were a few recommendations on matters of medical interest. One of these referred to a defect in vital statistics that is perhaps not peculiar to this commonwealth, but is nevertheless one that calls for amendment. This is the more true since the medical profession is in some respects responsible though not altogether without excuse for its neglect. Any one reading the reports of deaths published in the Chicago lay papers would naturally come to the conclusion that the native stock is on the road to extinction, and that obstetrics forms no part of the medical practice of American physicians. Foreign-born midwives seem to be busy delivering mothers with largely foreign-sounding names, and only occasionally, or at least in very inadequate proportion, do medical men appear to have any share in the work. It was said at one time that
VITAL STATISTICS AND REGISTRATION OF BIRTHS.. JAMA. 1901;XXXVI(5):330. doi:10.1001/jama.1901.02470050034012