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September 4, 1943

Current Comment

JAMA. 1943;123(1):38. doi:10.1001/jama.1943.02840360040013

ADMINISTRATION VS. MINISTRATION IN MEDICAL CARE  Legislation transforming the methods of providing medical care has been proposed in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa and the United States. The discussion of the proposed plans divides into two sharply contrasting streams that may seem to be dealing with wholly different subjects. Politicians, civilian planners, social security officials and propagandists in behalf of collectivization speak and write almost exclusively about the machinery of administration. They are concerned about offices, jobs, the distribution of authority, financial arrangements, political pressure groups and lines of authority. Detailed reports in medical journals of recent discussions by medical associations in all of the countries concerned indicate that physicians are interested primarily in the effects of such plans on the quality of medical service to be rendered. A British physician characterizes this dichotomy of the discussion by saying that political writers and speakers are concerned primarily with "admin