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When a physician enters the navy, as a rule he is not put aboard ship and abandoned, without help, to work out his own salvation. When he enters the merchant marine, however, he is cast loose alone as a rule, and although he knows much about medicine, surgery and obstetrics he generally knows little about the sea and less about ships. He is an officer of the ship, a practitioner to passengers and crew, and a public health official to all on board and to port officers. Frequently he is his own orderly, nurse, druggist and clerk. Whatever the post of ship surgeon may have been in the days of the buccaneers, it is now a job for a skilful physician, a firm but kindly officer, and a cultured gentleman. In 1906, this type of modern ship surgeon published the first edition of the "Ship-Surgeon's Handbook." The book had the
The Ship-Surgeon's Handbook. JAMA. 1927;89(15):1269. doi:10.1001/jama.1927.02690150079034
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