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December 4, 1926


JAMA. 1926;87(23):1928-1929. doi:10.1001/jama.1926.02680230052021

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Medicine as a Biologic Evil  When Darwin's doctrine of evolution became generally accepted, the danger that medical treatment might, by promoting the survival of the unfit, be injurious to the race was of course perceived. But this objection never seems to have been taken seriously by the leaders of the medical profession, too busily occupied with the prevention and treatment of disease to trouble about what they no doubt regarded as a doubtful corollary. But now no less a man than Dr. A. P. Beddard, physician to Guy's Hospital and lecturer on medicine in the medical school, brings forward strong arguments to show that the practice of medicine is exercising a dysgenic effect on the race. In a paper read before the Guy's Hospital Physical Society and published in Guy's Hospital Gazette, entitled "The Rôle of the Medical Profession in Biology," he says that when he was a student the

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