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April 10, 1937

Foreign Letters

JAMA. 1937;108(15):1271-1276. doi:10.1001/jama.1937.02780150045016

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LONDON  (From Our Regular Correspondent)March 13, 1937.

Special Tax Proposed for Foods with Health Claims  The attempts of the British Medical Association to grapple with the nostrum evil have been described before (The Journal, Dec. 5, 1936, p. 1900). Immense sums are spent on these "patent medicines," for which more or less fraudulent claims are widely advertised. A bill, made so moderate as to secure the support of newspaper and advertising associations and representatives of the drug trade, which would therefore have checked only the worst evils, was lost in consequence of misleading propaganda (The Journal, May 23, 1936, p. 1829). A tax is levied on "patent medicines" from which a considerable revenue is derived. But in these days when the government is so active in promoting the health of the people it cannot continue to ignore the evil of fraudulent claims.The reform of medicine stamp duties has

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