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December 13, 1941


JAMA. 1941;117(24):2054-2056. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820500036007

Near the end of the last century a national association in gastroenterology and another in proctology were organized. Since then both groups have functioned continuously and successfully.

In 1916, mainly through the persistent efforts of leaders of these associations, the American Medical Association officially recognized both specialties by establishing the Section on Gastro-Enterology and Proctology. Today we meet in the twenty-fifth annual session. The eminent success of the section has fully justified its creation. Through the untiring efforts of a qualified personnel under zealous leaders these special fields of medicine have developed progressively and are now established on a sound scientific basis.

Briefly, the primary functions of any medical specialty are:

  1. Scientific. The development of the specialty itself by scientific research and investigation and clinical observation.

  2. Educational. (a) Teaching its elemental principles to undergraduate and graduate students, (b) the training of competent young doctors who contemplate taking up